More good news for parents waiting on a COVID-19 vaccine: An American team has found success in preventing the transmission of COVID-19 between test animals...which is good news if you have a child who hates needles.
Researchers developed an inexpensive nasal spray that they applied to six ferrets. Those animals were put in three separate cages in groups of two. Then, scientists introduced a third ferret who had been given a placebo to each cage. Finally, they added a ferret who had recently been infected with COVID-19.
After 24 hours, the ferrets who had received the nasal spray treatment remained COVID-19 free. The ferrets who received the placebo drug were found to have contracted the coronavirus.
"Virus replication was completely blocked," the researchers noted in the study, which was funded by the National Institutes of Health and the Columbia University Medical Center and has yet to be peer-reviewed.
Researchers say they chose to work with ferrets because the animals can contract viruses through their noses, just like humans. They're optimistic that the research can be applied to developing a nasal spray that humans can use daily to help prevent the spread of COVID-19.
"If it works this well in humans, you could sleep in a bed with someone infected or be with your infected kids and still be safe," said the study's co-author Dr. Anne Moscona, in a statement made to the New York Times.
The study has been submitted to the journal Science to be peer-reviewed.
The research is optimistic—and comes at a time when we desperately need good news when it comes to fighting COVID-19.