September 21, 2020

Efficacy of povidone-iodine nasal antiseptic for rapid inactivation of SARS-CoV-2

By: Judy Mathias
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Editor's Note

This controlled, in-vitro study investigates the minimum contact time for povidone-iodine nasal antiseptic to inactivate the SARS-CoV-2 virus. All laboratory work was conducted in biosafety level 3 laboratories at the Institute for Antiviral Research at Utah State University, Logan.

Povidone-iodine was tested at diluted concentrations of 0.5%, 1.25%, and 2.5% and compared with controls at time periods of 15 and 30 seconds.


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Test media infected with SARS-CoV-2 demonstrated complete inactivation of the virus with concentrations of povidone-iodine nasal antiseptic as low as 0.5% after 15 seconds of contact.

Use of povidone-iodine nasal antiseptic in patients before intranasal surgical procedures could significantly decrease the risk of virus transmission via droplet and aerosol spread, the researchers say. Nasal povidone-iodine irrigations also should be considered for use by healthcare professionals for prophylaxis every 4 hours, or whenever donning or doffing their masks in high-risk settings.

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