As the virus incidence rate in the UK increases and many are again wondering about how to protect themselves… we are delighted to share news of an over-the-counter virus blocking nasal spray that is clinically proven to reduce the risk of a coronavirus infection by up to 80% (compared to a placebo).
Available in the UK as Boots Dual Defence, this spray provides a useful addition to other protective measures such as face masks, hand sanitizer and of course, the vaccine.
The active ingredient of the spray, Carragelose®, is manufactured by the Austrian biotech company Marinomed. It is scientifically manufactured from red seaweed into a unique, broadly active anti-viral compound. Clinical and preclinical studies have shown that the spray is effective against SARS-CoV-2 and different variants. It lays a natural protective film on the mucous membranes of the inside of the nose, which prevents the viruses from penetrating.
Most important of all is that the spray is proven to be safe and effective for children as young as one-year and pregnant women.
Marinomed Biotech AG announces that a nasal spray with iota-carrageenan, which is identical to Marinomed’s Carragelose®, showed significant efficacy in the prevention of COVID-19 in hospital staff who manage patients with this disease. These were the results of an independent and investigator-initiated study (IIT; CARR-COV-02, NCT04521322) conducted by an Argentinian research group.
In the multicenter, randomized, double-blind, controlled CARR-COV-02 study, 394 healthcare staff were randomly assigned to receive iota-carrageenan nasal spray (N = 199) or placebo (N = 195) four times per day. Both groups had similar gender and age distributions. The percentage of participants that developed COVID-19 was significantly lower in the group that received the iota-carrageenan spray compared to placebo (1.0% vs 5.1%, respectively; relative risk reduction for disease of 80.4 %; 95 % CI = 25-95 % – there is a 95 % chance that the risk reduction is in this range). The difference between the groups were statistically significant (Chi square test p = 0.01). Iota-carrageenan nasal spray was safe and well tolerated, and minor side effects, such as postnasal drip, were observed with a similar frequency in both groups (2.0 %).
The investigator-initiated CARR-COV-02 study (NCT04521322) was conducted by an Argentinian research group represented by Dr. Juan M. Figueroa, Institute of Science and Technology Cesar Milstein-Hospital de Clínicas-UBA; Dr. Mónica Lombardo, Nobeltri SRL and Hospital Universitario CEMIC; Dr. Ariel Dogliotti, Rosario Cardiovascular Institute; Dr. Luis P. Flynn, Sanatorium of Children of Rosario; Dr. Osvaldo Uchitel, Institute of Physiology, Molecular Biology and Neurosciences UBA-CONICET.
The data has been published on the website of the Instituto de Ciencia y Tecnología César Milstein: https://milstein.conicet.gov.ar/la-eficacia-del-spray-nasal-con-carragenina-para-la-prevencion-del-covid-19-ha-dado-resultados-positivos/
Dr. Andreas Grassauer, CEO of Marinomed, said: “The positive results of this important clinical trial with caregivers and hospital staff, highly exposed to infection risks, are confirming earlier findings on the antiviral activity of Carragelose against SARS-CoV-2. For the first time, the potential of Carragelose for the prevention of COVID-19 was demonstrated in a controlled clinical setting. As a next step, Marinomed is now planning clinical tests using the same technology for an inhalation solution that could treat pulmonary viral infections. The trial will include patients at risk for virally induced pneumonia, a main complication of COVID-19 and other viruses, such as Influenza A.”
Carragelose coats the mucosal tissues of the respiratory tract, forming a physical barrier that helps to protect against viral infection and viral spread. This in turn has been shown to reduce the viral load, and the body’s own natural defense may fight the virus more efficiently. The new results from this independent clinical trial in Argentina show that this mechanism of action also works against SARS-CoV-2, as already demonstrated in multiple preclinical studies by Marinomed and others.
A particular advantage of Carragelose is the broad activity of the polymer against different virus strains, such as Rhinovirus and already known endemic Coronaviruses. This effectiveness of Carragelose has been proven in earlier clinical trials with more than 600 patients suffering from early symptoms of the common cold. In addition, the safety profile of Carragelose is excellent. Products containing Carragelose, such as nasal sprays, lozenges or a throat spray have been marketed in Austria since 2008. By now, the products have been established as the first causative treatment of common cold and flu-like diseases worldwide and are distributed in more than 40 countries.
The spray was recommended by the German Society for Hospital Hygiene in December 2020: https://www.egms.de/static/en/journals/dgkh/2021-16/dgkh000373.shtml
Furthermore, a successful research study involving 480 frontline NHS workers was undertaken by Swansea University in November 2020 to investigate the efficacy of Boots Dual Defence in preventing COVID-19 illness and reducing the severity of COVID-19 symptoms.
Dr Zita Jessop (pictured), Principal Investigator for the clinical trial and clinician scientist at Swansea University, said at the time: “After seeing the effects of this pandemic on colleagues caring for patients with COVID-19, we wanted to find a way for research to help protect frontline NHS staff. Previous studies highlighted the effectiveness of iota-carrageenan-based nasal sprays against coronaviruses, indicating promise against SARS-Cov-2. If the results of this randomised placebo-controlled clinical trial are positive as we expect, this has the potential to add an extra prevention strategy in the fight against COVID-19.”
The new clinical trial results from the Argentinian research group further reinforce the initial findings in Swansea and demonstrate the proven effectiveness of Boots Dual Defence.
Carragelose® is a sulfated polymer from red seaweed and a unique, broadly active anti-viral compound. It is known as a gentle yet effective and safe prevention and treatment against respiratory infections. Several clinical and preclinical studies have shown that Carragelose® forms a layer on the mucosa wrapping entering viruses, thereby inactivating them, and preventing them from infecting cells. On February 18, 2021, the Company has informed that a recent study conducted by the Institute of Virology, Friedrich-Alexander University Erlangen-Nuremberg, Germany and Marinomed confirms previous studies showing efficacy of Carragelose® in preventing SARS-CoV-2 infection in vitro. Marinomed is holder of the IP rights and has licensed Carragelose® for marketing in Europe, parts of Asia, Canada, and Australia. For a full list of Marinomed’s portfolio of Carragelose®-containing nasal sprays and oral products, please visit https://www.carragelose.com/en/portfolio/launched-products, for a list of scientific publications on Carragelose®, click here https://www.carragelose.com/en/publications.
About Marinomed Biotech AG
Marinomed Biotech AG (Korneuburg, Austria) is a biopharmaceutical company listed on the Prime Market of the Vienna Stock Exchange. The company focuses on the development of innovative products based on two patent-protected technology platforms. The Marinosolv® technology platform increases the efficacy of hardly soluble compounds for the treatment of sensitive tissues such as eyes, nose, lung or gastrointestinal tract. The Carragelose® platform comprises innovative patent-protected products targeting viral infections of the respiratory tract and can reduce the risk of an infection with SARS-CoV-2. Carragelose® is used in nasal sprays, throat sprays and lozenges, which are sold via international partners in over 40 countries worldwide. Marinomed, Marinosolv® and Carragelose® are registered trademarks of Marinomed AG. These trademarks may be owned or licensed in select locations only. Further information is available at https://www.marinomed.com/en/technologies-markets/markets.