A team of researchers from Hokkaido University in Japan has found that a chemical component in some mouthwashes may suppress SARS-CoV-2.
The team, led by Kyoko Hida, found that low concentrations of the chemical cetylpyridinium chloride (CPC) reduce the viral load of SARS-CoV-2 in the mouth by disrupting the lipid membrane surrounding the virus. The team's findings were published in Scientific Reports.
Within 10 minutes of application, 30 to 50 µg/mL of CPC inhibited the infectivity and capability of SARS-CoV-2 cell entry. This finding remained true across four variants of SARS-CoV-2: the original, alpha, beta, and gamma variants (Sci Rep, August 18, 2022, Vol. 12, 14050).
Interestingly, mouthwashes that contain CPC performed better than CPC alone. The authors will continue assessing the effect of CPC-containing mouthwashes on the viral loads of COVID-19 patients.