Thai researchers readying anti-COVID nasal spray

Scientists at two Thai universities are confident they will have a nasal spray that can prevent COVID-19 infections ready for public use later this year, although the formulation is just beginning human trials.

Thailand has had substantial success with its vaccine rollout, as 71 percent of its population is now fully vaccinated. A nasal spray would be another affordable preventive tool against the virus since COVID-19 usually enters the body through nasal passages.

Officials signed a memorandum of understanding last week to develop and distribute the nasal spray. They included representatives from Chulalongkorn University’s Faculty of Medicine, Silpakorn University, the Health Systems Research Institute, the Government Pharmaceutical Organisation and Hibiocy Company.

The rector of Chulalongkorn University’s Faculty of Medicine said that the university has patented the antibodies created to make the spray. The university’s scientists are now ready to work with other institutions to get the product ready for clinical testing.

Silpakorn’s rector added that the spray proved effective in preventing infections during animal testing. He hopes that the partners will be able to produce a product that the public can use to prevent COVID-19 as soon as possible.

Hibiocy Company will distribute the spray in Thailand and internationally if it passes human trials. The hope is that the spray will be on pharmacy shelves by the third quarter of this year.

Aside from working on the nasal spray, Health Systems Research Institute has worked with Chulalongkorn to develop a monoclonal antibody combination to fight COVID-19 infections.

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