A nasal spray may have reduced coronavirus infection rates at a mass gathering during Rosh Hashanah in the highly endemic community of Bnei Brak, according to new, preliminary research.
Some 83 members of an ultra-Orthodox synagogue in Bnei Brak used the nasal spray "Traffix" during Rosh Hashanah services, and after two weeks, 2.4% of Traffix users were infected with the coronavirus while 10% of non-users were infected with the coronavirus.
The odds ratio for coronavirus infection in Traffix users was reduced by 78%.
The results led the researchers to recommend the use of Traffix in addition to other precautionary measures. No side effects were reported among users.
The nasal spray, created by Nasus Pharma, is a nasal powder inhaler that creates a protective layer over nasal mucosa, blocking viruses from infecting nasal cells. The primary ingredient in Traffix, hydroxypropyl methyl cellulose, forms a muco-adhesive gel that covers the nasal cells, preventing viruses from engaging with receptors.
It also creates an acidic microenvironment that can remain for five hours and has been shown to prevent respiratory illnesses such as N1H1 influenza and rhinovirus. The spray has been approved for use in Europe and Israel.
Nasus Pharma is a Tel Aviv-based biopharmaceutical company which develops intranasal powder products aimed at treating patients acute, emergency situations. The company focuses on nasal products due to higher dispersion and faster absorption of nasal treatments.
The research was completed by researchers from University of Haifa, University of Virginia, Nasus Pharma and Hadassah Medical Center. It is preliminary and has not yet been peer reviewed.