Mouthwash containing key chemical ‘could help stop coronavirus’ spread’

Mouthwash could be a key tool in the battle against the coronavirus, according to new research.

Professor Valerie O’Donnell is co-director of the Systems Immunity Research Institute at Cardiff University, and has been researching the power of mouthwash to help fight the disease.

It is believed its transmission via saliva droplets could be reduced by the antiseptic qualities of mouthwash.

Cetylpyridinium chloride – a key ingredient in many types of mouthwash – has been studied by scientists to uncover the effectiveness in helping stop the spread of coronavirus.

The chemical has raised hopes due to the "virucidal effect" that it has to kill 99.9% of pathogens and bacteria in the mouth.

Professor O’Donnell told The Daily Telegraph: “Our view is that the in vitro studies (including this one and also two other recent studies which showed the same for Listerine and PVP-I) are highly encouraging but so far, in vivo studies have not been published.

"The human oropharynx will be constantly producing virus so we don’t know how long the effect would persist for – this is the main question.

“Recent studies in test tubes have as much as possible tried to mimic the conditions in the throat, but of course this isn’t the same as in vivo.”

The study is yet to be peer-reviewed – while the outcome of the research by the team in Cardiff concluded further study is required.

Last month, researchers from Penn State College of Medicine in Pennsylvania, the US, claimed that certain mouthwashes and baby shampoos could be instrumental in combating Covid.

Lead researcher, Professor Craig Meyers, claimed: "While we wait for a vaccine to be developed, methods to reduce transmission are needed.

“The products we tested are readily available and often already part of people's daily routines."

The research demonstrated that several types of mouthwash which claimed to defeat 99.9% of bacteria were effective in inactivating coronavirus within 30 seconds.

The researches stated: "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."

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