Israeli trial shows anti-Covid spray effective

In study carried out among Charedim ahead of Rosh Hashanah, two out of 83 people given the spray contracted Covid


NEW YORK, NY - APRIL 05: Hundreds of members of the Orthodox Jewish community attend the funeral for a rabbi who died from the coronavirus in the Borough Park neighborhood which has seen an upsurge of (COVID-19) patients during the pandemic on April 05, 2020 in the Brooklyn Borough of New York City. Hospitals in New York City, which has been especially hard hit by the coronavirus, are facing shortages of beds, ventilators and protective equipment for medical staff. Currently, over 122,000 New Yorkers have tested positive for coronavirus. (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

A nasal spray given to strictly-Orthodox people in the Israeli city of Bnei Brak appears to be a strong defence against Covid-19.

As Rosh Hashanah approached last September, with growing concern about the further spread of the disease in the city, officials from the biopharmaceutical company Nasus Pharma approached a local rabbi and offered use of the spray Taffix.

Designed to coat the inside of the nose to prevent the virus penetrating, 83 people agreed to use the spray before attending synagogue.

Of these, just two contracted Covid.

The research was carried out by scientists from the University of Haifa and the University of Virginia.

Jonathan Ball, a University of Nottingham scientist said the study showed “the use of nose inhaler provided a physical, and maybe also a chemical barrier.”

But he stressed he was not a complete protection from the virus.

Dalia Megiddo, from Nasus Pharma agreed, saying the study was “not a replacement for masks or social isolation.”

She also added that the 83 people who used the spray - out of 243 people approached - may have been more diligent about hygiene anyway.




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