The Israeli mask company Sonovia has released a report showing that its trademark SonoMask should be equally protective against the Delta variant than the original Wuhan strain.
The mask was tested by the VisMederi laboratory to determine the antiviral activity of its fabric, which is coated in zinc oxide nano-particles that destroy bacteria, fungi and viruses. When tested against two new variants - though not the Delta variant specifically - it was found to show “potent antiviral activity,” according to Prof. Amos Adler, director of the Clinical Microbiology Laboratory at Tel Aviv University.
“COVID-19 variants might have different epidemiological or immunological properties that are the result of point mutations in critical areas of the receptor binding domain,” Adler said in a statement. “Still, their overall structure and biophysical properties of the virus are almost identical. Hence, the antiviral effect exerted by the Sonovia treated fabrics is expected to be present in all COVID-19 variants, including the recent Delta variant.”
Adler consults for the European Center for Disease Control.
VisMederi is a commercial research laboratory located in Italy. It says on its website that the company “currently receives orders worldwide in the field of vaccines, where it conducts analytical testing of biological samples and validation of bioanalytical methods for the pharmaceutical industry.”
Sonovia developed an almost-permanent, ultrasonic, fabric-finishing technology for mechanical impregnation of zinc oxide nanoparticles into textiles. The company sped up efforts to manufacture masks using its anti-pathogen fabric at the start of the coronavirus crisis in Israel to help frontline workers stay protected.
The technology is based on a lab-scale sonochemical process that was developed at Bar-Ilan University.
Until the pandemic, it had not produced a single product. Tens of thousands of its first masks were donated to Israeli hospitals and medical professionals.
Since then, the company has sold several hundreds of thousands of masks in over 100 countries.