SARS-CoV-2 infection in hospital areas is of particular concern. The health workers are working in high-risk areas. The reduction of the frequency of infection among health workers is of prime importance. Innumerable drugs, vaccines against SARS-CoV-2 are being developed. One such potential candidate against SARS-CoV-2 is silver nanoparticles (AgNp). Former studies showed that AgNp had inhibitory effects on SARS-CoV-2. Now the efficacy of AgNP based oral and nasal washes is investigated among health workers.
The study was carried out for 9 weeks (63 days). The participants of the study were divided into two groups- the “control group” with an average age of 33 years and the “experimental group” with an average age of 35 years. The experimental group was instructed to do mouthwash and nose rinse with ARGOVITZ®, an AgNPs solution. The control group was instructed to do mouthwashes and nose rinse conventionally without AgNPs solution.
Around 66% of the participants in the experimental group and 86% of the participants in the control group were vaccinated against the influenza virus. The incidence of SARS-CoV-2 infection was significantly lower in the experimental group vs the control group, where 1.8% (2 participants out of 114) and 28.2% (33 participants out of 117) were infected respectively. Parallelly, the antiviral activity of the silver nanoparticles was investigated in vitro using SARS CoV2 infected Vero E6 cell cultures.
Although AgNPs did not abolish viral production, infection was controlled to some extent with a reduction of about 80% at a concentration of 0.03%. These results show that following oral and nasal hygiene with AgNPs could reduce COVID 19 infections. Based on this, more investigations can be carried out for using AgNPs solution as a preventive measure against SARS-CoV-2.
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