Oral Rinses May Help to Inactivate Human Coronaviruses

Researchers at the Penn State College of Medicine revealed that certain oral antiseptics as well as mouthwashes may exhibit the ability to deactivate the infectious particles of human coronaviruses. It was suggested to initiate the clinical trials in order to find whether these products are effective enough to minimize the viral load in Covid-19 patients from spreading the virus while talking, sneezing or coughing. Researched findings were published in the Journal of Medical Virology.

The outbreak of the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-Cov-2) pandemic has created an unprecedented healthcare, social, and economic crisis. These circumstances emphasize the need to wear the masks and comply to the social distancing, which is believed to significantly decrease virus transmission.

However, under current circumstances, medical or dental interventions are still lacking, suggesting the need to develop additional strategies are required to lessen transmission, especially via major sites of reception and transmission of human coronaviruses (HCoV).

Craig Meyers, the distinguished professor of microbiology and immunology and obstetrics and gynecology, conducted the study along with a group of physicians and scientists who tested numerous oral and nasopharyngeal rinses in a laboratory setting to determine their ability to inactivate human coronaviruses that shared structural morphology with the SARS-CoV-2. They evaluated the efficacy of products including, a neti pot, 1% solution of baby shampoo, peroxide sore-mouth cleansers, and mouthwashes.

Meyers in the press release, said, “While we wait for a vaccine to be developed, methods to reduce transmission are needed.”

Researchers performed tests to replicate the virus interaction with the mouthwashes and rinses in the nasal and oral cavities which are major points of entry and transmission. They used the rinses and mouthwashes to treat the solutions containing a strain of human coronavirus, a readily available and genetically similar alternative for SARS-CoV-2.

After 30 seconds to 2 minutes, hey determined the viral load and virus inactivation. To determine how virus was deactivated, diluted solutions and human cells were placed adjacent. Later cells who survived were counted after few days of exposure to the viral solution.

Source: Journal of Medical Virology

The tissue culture infectious dose 50 (TCID50) assay was used to measure the viral titers reduction. It was found that the 1% baby shampoo nasal rinse solution inactivated human coronaviruses more than 99.9% efficacy with a 2‐min contact time.

Several over‐the‐counter mouthwash/gargle products including Listerine and Listerine‐like products were found highly effective at inactivating infectious virus with more than 99.9% even with a 30‐s contact time. Therefore, it is inferred from the results that certain oral antiseptics and mouthwashes may have the ability to deactivate the human coronaviruses, which are structurally and genetically similar to the SARS-Cov-2 virus.

It implicates that some of these products can be used to reduce the viral load i-e the amount of virus and prevent its replication. It may help in or amount of virus, in the mouth after infection and may help in reducing the virus transmission via mouth and nose.

Source: PAHO

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