Swedish company claims nasal spray ColdZyme could deactivate COVID-19 causing virus in mouth

The study was done in vitro (in a lab or a test tube) and only the preliminary findings have been released so far.

Myupchar July 23, 2020 15:13:47 IST
Swedish company claims nasal spray ColdZyme could deactivate COVID-19 causing virus in mouth

COVID-19 mainly spreads through droplet transmission when an infected person coughs, sneezes or talks near you. The virus-laden droplets can then enter your body through your mouth, nose or eyes and cause infection.

Now, Swedish life science company Enzymatica has claimed that their oral spray called ColdZyme can deactivate over 98 percent of the COVID-19 causing virus (SARS-C0V-2) present in the oral cavity within 20 minutes.

The study was done in vitro (in a lab or a test tube) and only the preliminary findings have been released so far.

ColdZyme and SARS-COV-2

As per the news release by Enzymatica, the main components of ColdZyme are glycerol and Atlantic cod trypsin. When you spray it in your mouth, it forms a sort of barrier in the oral cavity and inactivates any virus present there without affecting healthy cells of the body.

This would supposedly help in reducing the viral load of SARS-CoV-2 inside the throat where it actively replicates even in those with mild symptoms. Less viral load would, in turn, lead to reduced viral shedding and spread of the disease.

Previous studies

ColdZyme was originally made for the treatment of the common cold. It has shown to deactivate about 99 percent of the viruses that cause common cold such as rhinovirus, adenovirus and coronaviruses. ColdZyme has also shown to be as effective against the flu virus.

In a multicenter trial, 267 common cold patients were either given two sprays of ColdZyme six times a day since day one of symptom manifestation or medications like paracetamol and nose decongestants.

ColdZyme improved all the symptoms of the disease including sore throat, headache and nasal congestion. Though overall those with medication use got better effects, they were using medications much more frequently than the ColdZyme test group (about 23 percent more).

Things to consider

Explaining the importance of the study, Claus Egstrand, the chief operating officer of Enzymatica said in a news release, “Even if the current in vitro results cannot be directly translated into clinical efficacy, it is very interesting that ColdZyme is able to effectively deactivate SARS-CoV-2 in vitro since it constitutes a proof-of-principle that can be taken further into clinical studies. Thus, the results indicate that ColdZyme can offer a protective barrier against SARS-CoV-2.”

However, there are still a lot of questions that need to be answered. For example:

  • SARS-CoV-2 can also enter through the nose and eyes. The spray protects against oral viral shedding and infection only. Does it work for the other routes of infection? If yes, how?
  • How frequently will you have to use the spray for any real reduction in viral shedding?
  • Is there a particular strength of the drug that you would need in the case of COVID-19?
  • Is it safe for every group of people, even those with comorbidities and weaker immune systems?

All these questions will only be answered once the drug enters into the clinical trial phase.

For more information, read our article on How the coronavirus can enter through the eyes.

Health articles in Firstpost are written by myUpchar.com, India’s first and biggest resource for verified medical information. At myUpchar, researchers and journalists work with doctors to bring you information on all things health.

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