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Posted on May 01, 2020, 1 p.m.

Ultraviolet therapy may be coming to a hospital near you to help treat COVID-19 developed by Cedars-Sinai hospital in Los Angeles. 

Healight Platform Technology has been exclusively licensed to Aytu BioScience Inc for worldwide commercial development and release which could mean that hospitals around the globe may soon adopt this approach.

According to some reports this method has been billed as being a potential “first-in-class treatment for coronavirus and other respiratory infections,”  that utilizes proprietary methods of administering intermittent UVA light using a novel endotracheal device. Preclinical study findings are suggesting that this approach has the potential to help eradicate the spread of this COVID-19 outbreak, as well as “a wide range of viruses and bacteria, inclusive of coronavirus.”

A team from the Medically Associated Science and Technology Program at Cedars-Sinai led by Dr. Mark Pimental, MD have been developing Healight since 2016, and it has a growing body of evidence demonstrating its efficacy as both an antiviral and an antibacterial treatment. 

There have been rumors of talks with the FDA about the development of a near term path that could enable early use of this technology to help the COVID-19 patients who are suffering in ICUs, and it may also be useful in treating ventilator associated pneumonia, or VAP. 

"Our team has shown that administering a specific spectrum of UV-A light can eradicate viruses in infected human cells (including coronavirus) and bacteria in the area while preserving healthy cells," stated Dr. Pimentel of Cedars-Sinai. Ali Rezaie, MD, one of the inventors of this technology states, "Our lab at Cedars-Sinai has extensively studied the effects of this unique technology on bacteria and viruses. Based on our findings we believe this therapeutic approach has the potential to significantly impact the high morbidity and mortality of coronavirus-infected patients and patients infected with other respiratory pathogens. We are looking forward to partnering with Aytu BioScience to move this technology forward for the benefit of patients all over the world."

The FDA, Aytu, and Cedars-Sinai are rumored to be working together towards developing a plan for the expedited regulatory approval of Healight to be used against the continued battle against the global COVID-19 outbreak. Those critical ill with this virus may benefit from use of this minimally invasive treatment approach.

Around the globe many hospitals are already using UV light to help clean surfaces and disinfect rooms where COVID-19 patients have been treated, extending the use of such technology to the direct treatment of the virus in patients would appear to be the next logical step. 

Natural UV light from the sun appears to be able to destroy most harmful bacteria on the skin as well as viruses and other microbes, similar benefit could also potentially be gained from using artificial UV rays generated by medical devices, and this is what Aytu and Cedars-Sinai are hoping will be widely implemented around the globe. 

We are honored to be partnering with Cedars-Sinai as we believe the Healight therapeutic platform has the potential to help many patients during this coronavirus pandemic and beyond.This first-in-class technology has the potential to be a game changer for clinicians treating patients infected with coronavirus and other respiratory conditions, and our team is working tirelessly alongside the Cedars-Sinai team to determine the safety and effectiveness of this device in humans,” says Josh Disbrow, Chairman and CEO of Aytu BioScience.

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