Use of a hand rub/sanitizer containing olanexidine gluconate has the potential to become an important means of preventing human norovirus infection

In March 2020 researchers from Japan published the results of their study to assess the effectiveness of a new hand antiseptic containing olanexidine gluconate against human noroviruses. The researchers stated that human noroviruses are the major cause of non-bacterial acute gastroenteritis worldwide but as no therapeutic agent has yet been proven to prevent human norovirus infection, preventive healthcare interventions to block the infection routes play an important role in infection control. One of the possible infection routes of human noroviruses are through contaminated hands, but to date no hand antiseptics have been proven effective. In this study the researchers studied the effectiveness of five substances against 11 human norovirus genotypes, namely two olanexidine gluconate antiseptics (hand rub formulation and surgical field formulation), two kinds of ethanol solutions at different pH (approx. 3 or 7), and a base component of olanexidine gluconate hand rub formulation. Results showed that the infectivity of murine norovirus, a surrogate for human norovirus, was significantly reduced after use of the antiseptics. However, the olanexidine gluconate hand rub was the most effective at reducing the infectivity against human norovirus among the five tested materials.

Imai K et al. Virucidal Efficacy of Olanexidine Gluconate as a Hand Antiseptic Against Human Norovirus. Food Environ Virol. 2020 Mar 2. [Epub ahead of print]

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