What can Hypochlorous acid protect us from?

August 19, 2020 2 min read

What can Hypochlorous acid protect us from?

Hypochlorous acid (HOCl) is a powerful cleaning agent. But what exactly can it keep us safe from?


Pathogens is a term that means an organism that causes disease upon entering the body. These could be viruses, bacteria, fungi and parasites, and already there is research concluding that HOCl is effective against all these categories of pathogen.

Transmission of these could be in a variety of ways depending on its type:

  • Skin contact
  • Bodily fluids
  • Airborne particles
  • Contact with faeces
  • And touching a surface touched by an infected individual

These transmission forms are inevitable, they cannot be avoided, however, by ensuring that hands, surfaces and food are thoroughly cleaned, transmission can be limited.

Research has been conducted on pathogens commonly associated with foodborne diseases that could result in food poisoning and sickness, such as E. coli, listeria, salmonella and campylobacter to name some. A huge benefit of HOCl is that it is non-toxic and safe for human consumption, therefore it is a viable option for use at all stages of the food industry from field to plate. With proper application it can lower the number of pathogens, safely and without the need of a post-rinse, and increase the shelf life of the food product.

Of course, there are wider application than the food industry. HOCl has demonstrated a significant ally in keeping MRSA, found in hospital settings, and the influenza virus under control. Currently the main pathogen that individuals want protection against is of course the current strain of coronavirus, Covid-19. Whilst not a huge amount of research has been undertaken for this novel virus, the lab-based work on other coronaviruses, has already been published show promising results. This was predicted as viruses with a similar structure, such as HIV and HPV, have been documented as having a reduced infectivity with exposure to HOCl.

“Hypochlorous acid has been shown to inactivate coronaviruses in less than one minute”

Human coronaviruses can remain infectious on inanimate surfaces for up to 9 days at room temperature. With the application of a low concentration this is still effective to inactivate the virus in 10 minutes, and at a higher concentration, this is less than 60 seconds. We expect a similar effect against the coronavirus, Covid-19.

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