IIT Roorkee researchers develop anti-microbial nanocoating system for facemasks to tackle COVID-19

 A team of researchers at IIT Roorkee has developed a nano-coating system to be used for facemasks and PPE for reducing the transmission risk of COVID-19. This coating has been tested to effectively kill pathogens within 10-15 minutes. The formulation is highly effective against clinical pathogens such as Staphylococcus aureus and Escherichia coli O157. This formulation will be beneficial to frontline medical personnel for coating their existing facemasks and can be scaled up further for coating on their gowns.

“Facemask is a core component of the personal protective equipment (PPE), along with gown, gloves, and eye protection for frontline healthcare personnel. This nano-coating provides an additional layer of protection against pathogens in existing masks and can curb the transmission risk of the disease,” said Prof. Naveen K Navani of Department of Biotechnology and Centre of Nanotechnology who led the research.

The formulation also contains silver nanoparticles and plant-based antimicrobials which show synergistic killing effect against the pathogens. The combined effect of more than three antimicrobial compounds was used for the development of formulation which can be coated on any surface. Since the phytochemicals used in the formulation are known to destroy viruses, it has the potential to inhibit the Coronavirus too. 

It was developed by a four-member team including Pardeep Kumar, Dr. Arun Beniwal, and Ajmal Hussain.