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Triclosan: The multidimensional molecule to curb the COVID-19 menace

COVID-19 has struck the globe with stunning ferocity. While we do not know how long the crisis will last, how long for a vaccine to emerge; we know that hand and surface hygiene, face masks and social distancing only can help. As each of us navigates the impact of COVID-19 on our lives, we hope that you employ the right and efficient antimicrobial or rather antiviral molecules in our line of defense. A strong global presence in the antimicrobial platform close to three decades, we, Kumar Organic Products Ltd. are committed to supporting and responding to the needs of our community during this rapidly evolving set of unpredictable circumstances. It's worth to revisit the proven efficacies of our legendary antimicrobial molecule 'Triclosan' in a COVID-19 perspective.


Triclosan for COVID- 19 "Hand & Surface Hygiene Formulae":

It has been very well demonstrated that the antimicrobial efficacy of Triclosan is due to its ability to block the synthesis of fatty acids by inhibiting the enoyl-acyl carrier protein reductase enzyme. (Triclosan targets lipid synthesis. Nature. 1998;394:531-532). The antiviral activity of Triclosan was assayed against murine hepatitis virus (MHV), as a potential surrogate for SARS-CoV. Furthermore, it has been confirmed that SARS-CoV-2 enters the cell in the same path as SARS coronavirus, that is, through the ACE2 cell receptor (SARS and MERS: recent insights into emerging coronaviruses. Nat. Rev. Microbiol. 14, 523-534 (2016)).


The 2003 severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) was transmitted through direct and indirect contact and large droplet nuclei. A surface test method, which involves drying an amount of virus on a surface and then applying the product for a specific contact time, was used to determine the virucidal activity. The virus titers and log reductions were determined by the Reed and Muench tissue culture infective dose (TCID)50 end point method. Disinfectants and antiseptics, containing 0.050% of Triclosan demonstrated a 3-log reduction without any virus recovered in a 30-second contact time. (Am J Infect Control. 2009 Oct; 37(8):649-52. doi: 10.1016/j.ajic.2009.03.012. Epub 2009 Aug 18).


Triclosan for COVID-19 "Oral Hygiene":

Latest reports pronounce that live viruses were present in the saliva of infected individuals by viral culture method (Early transmission dynamics in Wuhan, China, of novel coronavirus-infected pneumonia.N.Engl.J.Med.https://doi.org/10.1056/NEJMoa2001316(2020). Triclosan had been the preferred antimicrobial in oral hygiene since long. Aiming to increase its efficacy, Triclosan has been associated to other molecules such as zinc citrate, a complementary antimicrobial agent in oral care formulations (The effects of a dentifrice containing zinc citrate and 2,4,4' trichloro-2'-hydroxydiphenyl ether.Periodontol.1986;57(9):555-5610). It makes real sense to have potent antiviral oral rinses to block the possibilities of oral route transmission of COVID- 19.


Triclosan for COVID-19 "Face masks":

The majority of facemasks and surgical facelets presently on the market consist of fluid resistant material to protect the user from the exposure to aerosols/moisture in the surrounding atmosphere, but do not provide any antimicrobial protection. Apparently, efforts should be made to develop antibacterial facelets and facemasks by incorporating an active antibacterial agent in the filtering material used to manufacture the facelet or facemask.


Triclosan has been used as an active agent in antibacterial facemasks. For example, U.S. Pat. No.7,044,993 and U.S. Publication No. 20030205137 describe the manufacture of masks equipped with a network of polyvinyl chloride (PVC) based organic fibers containing triclosan. Triclosan is impregnated within the three-dimensional matrix of the network of PVC fibers. WO 2006/034227 describes the manufacture of a medical facemask comprising a central transparent portion and an outer filter portion, wherein triclosan is incorporated into one or more regions of the mask.


In fact Triclosan has already been proved to be a better drug for malaria compared to quinine. (Ref: Patent EP1137386 B1, 2006). As World Health Organization and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention expect the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases to grow, we must make proactive and smart decisions. There may be many unanswered questions but true prevention is not waiting for bad things to happen but preventing things from happening in the first place. The need of the (pandemic) hour is to employ a suitable virucidal agent which can resist/inhibit/ kill SARS Cov-2 virus and the data shows that Triclosan could be a potent candidate.


Our appeal is not to overlook the potency of this molecule. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.





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