Certain oral antiseptics and mouthwashes may have the
ability to inactivate human coronaviruses, according to a Penn State College of Medicine research
study. The results indicate that some of these products might be useful for
reducing the viral load, or amount of virus, in the mouth after infection and
may help to reduce the spread of SARS-CoV-2, the coronavirus that causes
COVID-19.

Craig Meyers,
distinguished professor of microbiology and immunology and obstetrics and
gynecology, led a group of physicians and scientists who tested several oral
and nasopharyngeal rinses in a laboratory setting for their ability to
inactivate human coronaviruses, which are similar in structure to SARS-CoV-2.
The products evaluated include a 1% solution of baby shampoo, a neti pot,
peroxide sore-mouth cleansers, and mouthwashes.

The
researchers found that several of the nasal and oral rinses had a strong
ability to neutralize human coronavirus, which suggests that these products may
have the potential to reduce the amount of virus spread by people who are
COVID-19-positive.

“While
we wait for a vaccine to be developed, methods to reduce transmission are
needed,” Meyers said. “The products we tested are readily available and often
already part of people’s daily routines.”

Meyers
and colleagues used a test to replicate the interaction of the virus in the
nasal and oral cavities with the rinses and mouthwashes. Nasal and oral
cavities are major points of entry and transmission for human coronaviruses.
They treated solutions containing a strain of human coronavirus, which served
as a readily available and genetically similar alternative for SARS-CoV-2, with
the baby shampoo solutions, various peroxide antiseptic rinses and various
brands of mouthwash. They allowed the solutions to interact with the virus for
30 seconds, one minute and two minutes, before diluting the solutions to
prevent further virus inactivation. According to Meyers, the outer envelopes of
the human coronavirus tested and SARS-CoV-2 are genetically similar so the
research team hypothesizes that a similar amount of SARS-CoV-2 may be
inactivated upon exposure to the solution.

To
measure how much virus was inactivated, the researchers placed the diluted
solutions in contact with cultured human cells. They counted how many cells
remained alive after a few days of exposure to the viral solution and used that
number to calculate the amount of human coronavirus that was inactivated as a
result of exposure to the mouthwash or oral rinse that was tested. The results were published in the Journal
of Medical Virology.

The
1% baby shampoo solution, which is often used by head and neck doctors to rinse
the sinuses, inactivated greater than 99.9% of human coronavirus after a
two-minute contact time. Several of the mouthwash and gargle products also were
effective at inactivating the infectious virus. Many inactivated greater than
99.9% of virus after only 30 seconds of contact time and some inactivated 99.99%
of the virus after 30 seconds.   

According
to Meyers, the results with mouthwashes are promising and add to the findings
of a study showing
that certain types of oral rinses could inactivate SARS-CoV-2 in similar
experimental conditions. In addition to evaluating the solutions at longer
contact times, they studied over-the-counter products and nasal rinses that
were not evaluated in the other study. Meyers said the next step to expand upon
these results is to design and conduct clinical trials that evaluate whether
products like mouthwashes can effectively reduce viral load in
COVID-19-positive patients.

“People
who test positive for COVID-19 and return home to quarantine may possibly transmit
the virus to those they live with,” said Meyers, a researcher at Penn State
Cancer Institute. “Certain professions including dentists and other health care
workers are at a constant risk of exposure. Clinical trials are needed to
determine if these products can reduce the amount of virus COVID-positive
patients or those with high-risk occupations may spread while talking, coughing
or sneezing. Even if the use of these solutions could reduce transmission by
50%, it would have a major impact.”

Future
studies may include a continued investigation of products that inactive human
coronaviruses and what specific ingredients in the solutions tested inactivate
the virus.

Janice
Milici, Samina Alam, David Quillen, David Goldenberg and Rena Kass of Penn
State College of Medicine and Richard Robison of Brigham Young University also
contributed to this research.

The
research was supported by funds from Penn State Huck Institutes for the Life
Sciences. The researchers declare no conflict of interest.

 

Welcome to ADDNORAL Network

Discover more from ANINEWS24

Subscribe to get the latest posts sent to your email.

2022-04-23

Leave a Reply