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Gilly Regev

Developed by an Israeli biochemist, the anti-viral nasal spray has been shown to kill 99.9% of viruses.

By Yakir Benzion, United With Israel

An Israeli company has begun producing a “life-saving” nasal spray than kills 99.9% of viruses and is expected to be readily available to save lives in countries where vaccines will by unavailable for months or even years, the Times of Israel reported this week.

Developed by Israeli biochemist Dr. Gilly Regev, the revolutionary treatment for viruses – including the coronavirus – is effective within two minutes of taking the dose.

Regev told the Times that had the spray been available earlier, it might have prevented many of the fatalities from the pandemic.

“We are hoping that our nasal spray will now save many lives of people in countries that are waiting for the vaccine,” said Regev, who now lives in Canada where she founded the company SaNOtize. “This will be affordable and can be used for prevention, to protect from any respiratory viral infection.”

Regev said the Nitric Oxide Nasal Spray (NONS), which is being sold under the brand name Enovid, kills viruses, including the coronavirus, while they are in the upper respiratory tract, thereby preventing the virus from incubating and spreading to the lungs.

In fact, the spray has been shown to be effective in the lab against a wide range of viruses, Regev said, adding that it is equally effective with the coronavirus mutations such as the UK and South African variants

“It contains a broad spectrum antiviral which kills all viruses and all variants,” Regev said.

Regev describes Enovid as something like a “hand sanitizer equivalent for the nose.” The spray works by creating a physical barrier in the nasal passages to stop viruses along with a “chemical barrier” of nitric oxide, which is known for its antimicrobial qualities.

“The nitric oxide means this is a special spray that doesn’t just block viruses but actually kills them,” Regev said.

Israel’s Ministry of Health has approved Enovid for use for those aged 12 and up, so that it can fill the gap for those teenagers who are not yet 16, the minimum age for the Pfizer coronavirus vaccine that has already been given to 5.2 million Israelis.

Israel is the first country where the spray is ready to be sold, as it has already been approved for use in New Zealand and approval is being worked on for other countries, including the UK.

The factory, in Ness Ziona just south of Tel Aviv will be churning out 200,000 to 500,000 bottles a month by May, Regev told the Times.

“After this we’re hoping to get to capacity of a million bottles a month,” said Regev, who studied biochemistry at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. “I hope this product will bring pride and jobs to Israel.”

Regev admitted that the success is based on testing in labs with a range of live viruses, including influenza and SARS-CoV-2, but a clinical trial that was completed last week in the UK showed that Enovid could prevent the transmission of COVID-19, shorten its course, and reduce the severity of symptoms and damage in those already infected.

The spray was actually developed as a medicine to fight the flu, before the pandemic struck, but, Regev said, the regulatory process slowed her down.

“Theoretically we could have distributed it a year ago, but we needed to negotiate regulatory approval. That’s the biggest frustration, that we’ve been trying 24/7 for a year to bring it to the market, and it could have saved a lot of lives. I believe it would have prevented infections and therefore reduced deaths.”

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