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Nasal spray could protect against COVID-19 for up to 8 hours

A new experimental nasal spray could prevent people from getting infected with COVID-19 for up to eight hours, according to a study.

The promising treatment has shown it can block infection from the virus in lab studies with mice,  according to researchers at the University of Helsinki in Finland.

“This technology is cheap and highly manufacturable, and the inhibitor works equally well against all variants,” study author Kalle Saksela told Gizmodo.

“It works also against the now-extinct SARS virus, so it might well also serve as an emergency measure against possible new coronaviruses.”

The spray, developed for immunocompromised and other high-risk people, is made of an antibody-like synthetic protein that recognizes and binds to the spike protein of the coronavirus — temporarily stopping it in its tracks, according to the study.

Spraying white nose spray bottle with black background and copy space.
A new experimental nasal spray treatment could prevent people from getting infected with COVID-19 for up to eight hours, according to a study.
Getty Images/iStockphoto
Colorized scanning electron micrograph of a cell (gray) infected with a variant strain of SARS-CoV-2 virus particles.
The spray is made of an antibody-like synthetic protein that recognizes and binds to the spike protein of the coronavirus.
BSIP/Universal Images Group via

Researchers found that a small dose of it prevented cells from being infected with all variants of the coronavirus, including Omicron.

They also found that mice given treatment were much less likely to have trouble in their upper respiratory tract and lungs after being exposed to the Beta variant of COVID-19.

But the nasal spray hasn’t yet been tested on humans, lab studies are not yet peer-reviewed and more research is needed, the scientists said.

Saksela also warned that the treatment isn’t meant to replace vaccines or other drugs.

“Its prophylactic use is meant to protect from SARS-CoV-2 infection,” Saksela said. “However, it is not a vaccine, nor meant to be an alternative for vaccines, but rather to complement vaccination for providing additional protection.”

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Donna Miller

Donna is one of the oldest contributors of Gruntstuff and she has a unique perspective with regards to Science which makes her write news from the Science field. She aims to empower the readers with the delivery of apt factual analysis of various news pieces from Science. Donna has 3.5 years of experience in news-based content creation, and she is now an expert at it. She loves journalism, and that is the reason, she moved from a web content writer to a News writer, and she is loving it. She is a fun-loving woman who has very good connections with every team member. She makes the working environment cheerful which improves the team’s work productivity.

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