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Aquila Bioscience: Making clean work of Covid-19

ABD Device removes 99.99% of coronavirus from human skin – safely

New independent research proves that breakthrough technology from Galway company Aquila Bioscience safely removes the virus that causes COVID-19.

The medical technology company, a spin-out of the National University of Ireland Galway, is the developer of Pathogen Capturing Technology (PCT), now proven to safely remove 99.99% of SARS-CoV-2 – the cause of COVID-19 – from human skin.

The research was undertaken by NeoVirTech SAS, one of Europe’s leading virus imaging and antiviral discovery companies, at its facility in Toulouse, France, using donor human skin from cosmetic surgeries.

The results are a major milestone for Aquila Bioscience and the first time that a safe and non-toxic technology has been proven to remove the COVID-19 virus from human skin with such efficiency.

It couldn’t have come at a more opportune time, given the urgent need to protect society and control the spread of COVID-19 in the community in what has been called the pandemic’s ‘second wave’.

To this end Aquila Bioscience has launched a pilot product registered with US FDA as Class I medical device, the Anti Bioagent Decontamination Device, or ABD Device. It is a large wipe, soaked in proprietary PCT, sterilized and individually packaged, ready for use by front-line workers in healthcare centres, emergency workers, schools, offices and other facilities.

Because the ABD Device is free from alcohol or toxic chemicals it can be safely – and if necessary frequently – used on sensitive areas of the human body including the eyes, nose and mouth, without causing any adverse side effects. It can also be used on sensitive equipment.

Unlike other wipes on the market, the ABD Device is environmentally safe as it is made from natural materials, the gold standard for Covid-19 virus skin decontamination.

Its use will bring enormous benefits to individuals, communities and healthcare systems globally in the fight against the pandemic, without harming the environment.

The PCT technology was originally developed to protect first-responders and defence forces personnel from a potential biological attack from deadly agents such as anthrax, plague and ricin.

The technology works by using microscopic hooks to grab hold of bacteria and viruses, using a capturing mechanism similar to a nano-scale magnet.

The revolutionary technology was developed in collaboration with the Irish Defence Forces and the Czech University of Defence and supported by the European Defence Agency, the European Union Horizon 2020 and the European Innovation Council.

It is now being made available to governments and organisations as a superior decontamination solution in the fight against the spread of Covid-19.

“Aquila Bioscience’s innovative and groundbreaking technology is a major game-changer in the future of pathogen and infection control,” says Lokesh Joshi, Aquila Bioscience’s founder and Professor in Glycoscience and research VP at NUI Galway.

“We have been using chemicals that harm human health and the environment for over a century and while these methods kill the pathogens, they also harm and kill our own cells and lead to many health problems,” said Joshi.

The new results prove that this novel technology is equally if not more effective than the highest performing chemical-based methods currently on the market but, crucially, without any of the environmental or health problems.

“Nature is the greatest inspiration and greatest innovator and Aquila’s pathogen capture technology is based on how nature protects us every day from pathogens in a safe and effective manner. Our technology will pave the way for safer methods of decontamination that do not cause harm to humans or the natural world,” says Joshi.

The research and development of pathogen capture technology has been supported by European Defence Agency, EU H2020 and European Innovation Council and the technology was developed in collaboration with the Defence Forces Ireland and the Czech Republic’s University of Defence.

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