Perspective Open Access

Pulsed Ultraviolet C as a Potential Treatment for COVID-19

Fibrosis. 2023, 1(1), 10002; https://doi.org/10.35534/fibrosis.2023.10002
Elroei David 1, *    Alina Karabchevsky 2,    Marina Wolfson 3,    Vadim E. Fraifeld 3, *   
1
Nuclear Research Center Negev (NRCN), P.O.B 9001, Beer-Sheva 8419001, Israel
2
Department of Electro-Optics engineering and Photonics, School of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Beer Sheva 8410501, Israel
3
The Shraga Segal Department of Microbiology, Immunology and Genetics, Faculty of Health Sciences, Center for Multidisciplinary Research on Aging, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Beer Sheva 8410501, Israel
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.

Received: 01 Feb 2023    Accepted: 03 Mar 2023    Published: 07 Mar 2023   

Abstract

Currently, low dose radiotherapy (LDRT) is being tested for treating life-threatening pneumonia in COVID-19 patients. Despite the debates over the clinical use of LDRT, some clinical trials have been completed, and most are still ongoing. Ultraviolet C (UVC) irradiation has been proven to be highly efficient in inactivating the coronaviruses, yet is considerably safer than LDRT. This makes UVC an excellent candidate for treating COVID-19 infection, especially in case of severe pneumonia as well as the post COVID-19 pulmonary fibrosis. However, the major challenge in using UVC is its delivery to the lungs, the target organ of COVID-19, due to its low penetrability through biological tissues. We propose to overcome this challenge (i) by using pulsed UVC technologies which dramatically increase the penetrability of UVC through matter, and (ii) by integrating the pulsed UVC technologies into a laser bronchoscope, thus allowing UVC irradiation to reach deeper into the lungs. Although the exact characteristics of such a treatment should yet to be experimentally defined, this approach might be much safer and not less efficient than LDRT.

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