Natural wellness company Holista CollTech (ASX: HCT) has announced independent tests of Path-Away anti-pathogenic aerosol solution have shown the ingredient can kill 99.9% of the virus that causes COVID-19 within two minutes on a hard surface.
United States-based accredited facility Microbac Laboratories Inc conducted the tests on the plant-based, alcohol-free product as a follow-up from preliminary testing earlier this year in the United Kingdom against the feline coronavirus, which is a surrogate of the COVID-19 causing virus, SARS-CoV-2.
In this newest test, thawed samples of cells containing SARS-CoV-2 were seeded in 24-well plates, to which two millilitres of Path-Away was added to the dried virus inoculum and held for the contact time of two minutes at 21°C with 53% relative humidity.
For the test to be deemed successful, Path-Away had to demonstrate a log reduction equal to or greater than three on each test carrier in the presence or absence of cytotoxicity.
Microbac’s testing concluded that Path-Away – which is the active ingredient used in Holista’s NatShield and Protectene range of disinfectant products – killed 99.9% (greater than or equal to 3 Log) of the COVID-19 causing virus on a hard surface within two minutes of exposure.
Holista chief executive officer Dr Rajen Manicka said the test results will help Path-Away address an untapped global market for all-natural disinfectants which are safe for use on hands and face.
“The results from Microbac will give our customers a greater level of confidence that NatShield can be effective against the highly-contagious COVID-19 causing virus when used on skin, on surfaces and as an aerosol,” he said.
“The fact that Path-Away can kill 99.9% of the virus in two minutes is important as we know it can be effectively used for air-borne control of COVID-19 given recent evidence that the virus can be spread through the air.”
US testing standards
Path-Away’s US manufacturer Global Infection Control Consultants (GICC) claims it is the world’s first totally natural and safe organic disinfectant to have met US testing standards.
GICC president Dr Arthur Martin said Holista’s test results were particularly pleasing in light of recent research which shows COVID-19 can survive on surfaces far longer than scientists had originally calculated.
“To the best of my knowledge, this is the first time a completely natural, all-organic compound has been successfully proven to kill the actual virus causing COVID-19, to 99.9% within two minutes,” he said.
“We are excited because this will allow us to speed up the formal process of entering onto the US Environmental Protection Agency’s ‘List N’ [of products that can kill the coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 when used according to the label directions].”
In terms of infection control, a log (short for logarithm) reduction conveys how effective a product is at reducing pathogens.
It stands for a 10-fold (one decimal) or 90% reduction in numbers of live bacteria.
The greater the log reduction, the more effective the product is at killing bacteria and other pathogens which can cause infections.
During product efficacy testing, laboratories count the number of colony-forming units (CFUs) of the given pathogen (such as COVID-19 virus) present at the start of the test.
They then apply the disinfection product being tested (such as Path-Away), alongside a control product and wait the required test time before recounting the number of CFUs present.
The result of the difference between the control and the test product is expressed as a log reduction.
A 3-Log reduction – such as that achieved by Path-Away within two minutes of application – equates to a 99.9% reduction, or a greater than 1,000 times reduction in potentially harmful micro-organisms.
Path-Away achieved this benchmark in each of the 24-well plates, representing a 100% success rate.
All controls met the criteria for a valid test and Microbac’s conclusions were based on observed data.