Photo-oxidation kills bird flu virus in water
An existing water-purification technology, which uses
no chemicals, has been found to kill water-borne avian
The technology, which is currently funded by the US Department of Homeland
, uses photo-oxidation to purify water, mimicking the natural water
purification that occurs in the environment.
In a recent study, the technology was found to destroy the H9N9 subtype of
avian influenza in water. Vortex
, the company that owns the patented technology, says
that the H9N9 strain is comparable to the H5N1 subtype identified by the World Health Organisation
potentially fatal to humans.
Although a number of popular oxidising agents, such as chlorine, would
reduce the risk of a water-borne outbreak of bird flu, this technology naturally
destroys the virus while eliminating the risks associated with chlorine and
â€œThis study demonstrates the feasibility of inactivating avian influenza A
virus in water without introducing potentially harmful chemicals,â€ said University of Minnesota
Professor of Virology
Sagar Goyal. â€œThe Vortex technology was shown to inactivate avian influenza
virus in tap water.â€
Vortex is currently under contract with the Department of Homeland Security
to develop chlorine-free water purification systems for municipal use, because
the storage and transportation of chlorine have been identified as potential
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