Ole Miss researchers a sniff away from stopping COVID-19

OXFORD, Miss. — Researchers at Ole Miss could be just a sniff away from stopping COVID-19 in its tracks.

At least on a daily basis.

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Researchers worked on a nose spray to control the spread since the first cases were diagnosed in the United States months ago.

According to researchers at the University of Mississippi, the nasal spray works by blocking COVID-19.

According to Dr. Joshua Sharp, an associate professor at the Ole Miss School of Pharmacy, the nasal spray works because it contains sugars like the ones the virus binds itself to in your nasal passages.

“It is really similar to the sugar that the virus will bind to and it will keep the virus from being able to stick to the cells in your body and then from there it just goes on and neutralizes it and it doesn’t infect you,” Sharp said.

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Sharp said researchers tried to develop a daily nose spray.

"What we are aiming for is a spray that will protect the regular person through the workday, we are looking for 12 hours of protection, right now in mouse models, it suggests we will get 12 hours, but there is a lot to do, " Sharp said.

Sharp said the University is working on getting FDA clinical trials approved for the nose spray.

“Once we get enough patients that we are ready to do tests and make sure the nose spray doesn’t cause any unanticipated side effects then we move on to find out if it is effective,” he said.

The University is looking for healthy adults ages 18 to 65 to participate in clinical studies. If interested, contact kaharris6@olemiss.edu