Hypochlorous acid (HOCl) solutions were evaluated for their virucidal ability against a low pathogenic avian influenza virus (AIV), H7N1. HOCl solutions containing 50, 100 and 200 ppm chlorine (pH 6) or their sprayed solutions (harvested in dishes placed at 1 or 30 cm distance between the spray nozzle and dish) were mixed with the virus with or without organic materials (5% fetal bovine serum: FBS). Under plain diluent conditions (without FBS), harvested solutions of HOCl after spraying could decrease the AIV titer by more than 1,000 times, to an undetectable level (< 2.5 log10TCID50/ml) within 5 sec, with the exception of the 50 ppm solution harvested after spraying at the distance of 30 cm. Under the dirty conditions (in the presence of 5% FBS), they lost their virucidal activity. When HOCl solutions were sprayed directly on the virus on rayon sheets for 10 sec, the solutions of 100 and 200 ppm could inactivate AIV immediately after spraying, while 50 ppm solution required at least 3 min of contact time. In the indirect spray form, after 10 sec of spraying, the lids of the dishes were opened to expose the virus on rayon sheets to HOCl. In this form, the 200 ppm solution inactivated AIV within 10 min of contact, while 50 and 100 ppm could not inactivate it. These data suggest that HOCl can be used in spray form to inactivate AIV at the farm level.
The virucidal effects of two types of electrolyzed water, acidic electrolyzed water (AEW) and neutral electrolyzed water (NEW), on avian influenza viruses were studied. Virus titers of the highly pathogenic H5N1 virus and the low-pathogenic H9N2 virus irreversibly decreased by >5-log at 1 min after the viruses were mixed with NEW containing ≥43 ppm free available chlorine (FAC), but not with NEW containing <17 ppm FAC. The minimum concentration of FAC for a virucidal effect of NEW was estimated at around 40 ppm. In contrast, the virus titers decreased by >5 log at 1 min after the viruses were mixed with AEW, in which the concentration of the FAC ranged from 72 to 0 ppm. Thus, the virucidal effect of AEW did not depend on the presence of FAC. Reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction amplified fragments of the M and NP genes, but not the complete M gene, from RNA extracted from the AEW-inactivated virus. Moderate morphological changes were found under the electron microscope, although no changes were observed in the electrophoresed proteins of the AEW-inactivated virus. No viral genes were amplified from the RNA extracted from the NEW-inactivated virus, regardless of the length of the targeted genes. No viral particles were detected under the electron microscope and no viral proteins were detected by electrophoresis for the NEW-inactivated virus. Thus, this study demonstrated potent virucidal effects of AEW and NEW and differences in the virucidal mechanism of the two types of electrolyzed water.