High-dose chemotherapy causes intestinal inflammation and subsequent breakdown of the mucosal barrier, permitting translocation of enteric pathogens, clinically manifesting as fever. Antibiotics are mainstay for controlling these complications, however, they are increasingly recognized for their detrimental effects, including antimicrobial resistance and dysbiosis. Here, we show that mucosal barrier injury induced by the mucotoxic chemotherapeutic agent, high-dose melphalan (HDM), is characterized by hyper-active IL-1b/CXCL1/neutrophil signaling. Inhibition of this pathway with IL-1RA, anakinra, minimized the duration and intensity of mucosal barrier injury and accompanying clinical symptoms, including diarrhea, weight loss and fever in rats. 16S analysis of fecal microbiome demonstrated a more stable composition in rats receiving anakinra, with reduced pathogen expansion. In parallel, we report through Phase IIA investigation that anakinra is safe in stem cell transplant patients with multiple myeloma after HDM. Ramping-up anakinra (100-300 mg administered intravenously for 15 days) did not cause any adverse events or dose limiting toxicities, nor did it change time to neutrophil recovery. Our results reinforce that strengthening the mucosal barrier may be an effective supportive care strategy to mitigate local and systemic clinical consequences of HDM. We are now conducting a Phase IIB multicenter, placebo-controlled, double-blinded trial to assess clinical efficacy of anakinra (AFFECT-2).Trial registration: ClinicalTrials.gov identifier: NCT03233776.