Improved inactivation of nonenveloped enteric viruses and their surrogates by a novel alcohol-based hand sanitizer

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Norovirus is the leading cause of food-related illness in the United States, and contamination of ready-to-eat items by food handlers poses a high risk for disease. This study reports the in vitro (suspension test) and in vivo (fingerpad protocol) assessments of a new ethanol-based hand sanitizer containing a synergistic blend of polyquaternium polymer and organic acid, which is active against viruses of public health importance, including norovirus. When tested in suspension, the test product reduced the infectivity of the nonenveloped viruses human rotavirus (HRV), poliovirus type 1 (PV-1), and the human norovirus (HNV) surrogates feline calicivirus (FCV) F-9 and murine norovirus type 1 (MNV-1) by greater than 3 log10 after a 30-s exposure. In contrast, a benchmark alcohol-based hand sanitizer reduced only HRV by greater than 3 log10 and none of the additional viruses by greater than 1.2 log10 after the same exposure. In fingerpad experiments, the test product produced a 2.48 log10 reduction of MNV-1 after a 30-s exposure, whereas a 75% ethanol control produced a 0.91 log10 reduction. Additionally, the test product reduced the infectivity titers of adenovirus type 5 (ADV-5) and HRV by 3.16 log10 and 4.32 log10, respectively, by the fingerpad assay within 15 s; and PV-1 was reduced by 2.98 log10 in 30 s by the same method. Based on these results, we conclude that this new ethanol-based hand sanitizer is a promising option for reducing the transmission of enteric viruses, including norovirus, by food handlers and care providers.

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