Special Report: The recent emergence of the Omicron coronavirus variant serves as a reminder that the world needs to continue doing its level best to combat the illness.
The full impact of Omicron on local markets remains to be seen, but for tech innovator Nanoveu Limited (ASX:NVU) the mutation reinforces the importance of the work it's done in the space.
Nanoveu’s flagship brand is NanoshieldTM – a collection of self-disinfecting products scientifically proven to be effective against five different kinds of coronavirus.
Nanoshield’s proven coronavirus casualties include murine hepatitis virus (found in mice) and human coronavirus 229E – both TGA-approved surrogates for use in COVID-19 disinfectant efficacy tests – as well as human coronaviruses OC43 and NL63.
Perhaps most compelling of all is the fifth variant on the list. A partnership with its customer Nestle has allowed the company to test Nanoshield on SARS-CoV-2 – more commonly known as COVID-19 – which resulted in proof that the tech eliminates up to 99% of microbes within minutes of contact.
Its proven effectiveness across five strains of coronavirus, including COVID-19, gives Nanoveu confidence that its product stands up against new strains of the virus.
That’s significant, as the world looks to return to some level of normal.
“The current pandemic has taught us many things but the most important of which is a reminder that no matter how much we want our lives to return to normalcy, a single mutation can set us backwards,” Nanoveu founder and CEO Alfred Chong told Stockhead.
“On that note, we should always be on the defensive, taking the extra steps to ensure we remain safe. In developing our product, we looked at certain attributes which are now showing its resilience.
“The patented antiviral agent we have deployed for our products is not only grounded in science, but has been time tested by leading laboratories globally, customer-validated by tier 1 multinational companies, and has the potential to significantly contribute to the global fight against the virus for years to come.”
The science of Nanoshield
Nanoshield is available across a series of antiviral and antimicrobial products, including tape, antiviral face masks and a mask refresh spray, smartphone screen protectors and pre-cut film to be applied to surfaces. The company has also developed a new spray formulation for enterprise scale antiviral and antibacterial textile treatment, including airports and other large public spaces.
All of the products make use of the same patented technology – a cuprous iodide antiviral agent which attaches itself to the spike proteins which envelop the virus.
Viruses have a protective layer that attempts to preserve the infectious DNA/RNA inside long enough to infect host cells. Non-enveloped viruses have a capsid protein layer, enveloped viruses have a lipid membrane with spike proteins. COVID is an enveloped virus. Pic: Supplied.
“The reason our technology is so fast at disinfecting these viruses is to do with protein adsorption,” Nanoveu chief commercial officer Thomas Apedaile told Stockhead.
“The type of copper we use has very high protein adsorption, which attach quickly to the spike proteins on SARS-CoV-2 and effectively burst the bubble of the virus.”
The cuprous iodide tech used by Nanoshield is demonstrated to be much more effective in adsorbing the virus when measured against other forms of copper and silver.
“Not all copper is created equally,” Apedaile said.
Combatting the virus a team effort
According to Apedaile, Nanoveu’s innovative Nanoshield product is just one part of a holistic approach to combatting the spread of COVID-19 and its variants.
“We reference the Swiss cheese model as a means of reducing transmissions of COVID,” he said.
“If you look at a block of Swiss cheese there’s no holes in it but cut into slices there are.
“If you put those slices back together the cheese becomes impenetrable. In the COVID context the layers are things like quarantine and isolation, vaccines, social distancing, hand hygiene, air filtration and disinfectant.
“We see technology like antimicrobial surfaces as another protective layer. If you coat a surface with our product it will disinfect itself for a year.
“That’s the equivalent of cleaning for a whole year – it can definitely help, it certainly can’t harm, and if we have as many of these layers in place as possible, you’re setting yourself up to potentially avoid further lockdowns.”
This article was developed in collaboration with Nanoveu, a Stockhead advertiser at the time of publishing.
This article does not constitute financial product advice. You should consider obtaining independent advice before making any financial decisions.