Many viruses require reduced sulfhydryl groups for cell fusion and entry. Corona viruses are rich in cysteine, which residues must be intact for viral activity. Sulfhydryl groups are vulnerable to oxidation. Ozone therapy, a very inexpensive and safe modality, may safely exploit this critical vulnerability in many viruses, inclusive of corona virus.
Corona virus is rapidly exploding in China. There is real threat of a global epidemic with an easily transmissible disease, with a significant morbidity and mortality, now, if not in the future. Regarding this virus, it carries a several days incubation period , infected people will escape simple detection by temperature, permitting rapid global transmission. As of this writing, China has millions on lock down.
Medicine has little in its arsenal for viral disease and its arsenal for bacterial infection is waning as well. This hardy virus may have a soft underbelly easily and safely exploitable with ozone therapy.
Ozone is triatomic oxygen. Ozone therapy (OT) utilizes 1-5% ozone in 95-99% oxygen as a gas. As a medical therapy, it has been in use since the late 1800s, but is little known. It is not patentable for profit; thus, corporate interests have no incentive. Consequently, few formal studies have been performed. Yet prolific science article have been published, conducted in Italy, Cuba and elsewhere, demonstrating powerful biochemical effects.
Ozone is the most powerful oxidant found in nature. It actually is produced in our body, observed in a stunning discovery at Scripps Institute. Bocci and Menendez both published books summarizing their research groups’ published basic science works. , Briefly, OT improves blood rheology, oxygen delivery, oxygen utilization, and immune modulation via cytokine induction. Bocci privately regarded OT to create “super gifted red cells” and as the “ideal cytokine inducer”.
When blood is treated with ozone, ozone instantly reacts with electron rich bonds and creates longer living downstream metabolites called ozonides:reactive oxygen species and lipid oxidation products, inclusive of peroxides. These molecules appear to act as messengers for the key biochemical and immune modulating effects of the therapy. Menendez found that preconditioning animals with ozone is as powerful as dexamethasone in reducing TNFαin endotoxic shock. This would be exceptionally valuable as a means of safely suppressing “cytokine storm”, often the real killer in hot infections and seemingly with fatal Corona virus.
In his recent review article , Rowen states: “OT may be ideal therapy for viruses. In order to successfully penetrate cells, many viruses require membrane glycoproteins in the reduced R-S-H form rather than oxidized (R-S-S-R). Ozone inactivates many viruses directly. , , , , ,
“Mirazmi, et.al. found if the thiol groups were oxidized, CMV lost infectivity. When thiols were chemically re-reduced (by dithiothreitol), the virus regained 65% infectivity. Viruses dependent on reduced sulfhydryl include CMV, HIV, Norwalk, collophage MS3, hepatitis A and poliovirus. , , , Reflecting on the reduction of “critical” disulfide bonds for vaccinia virus cellular entry, Ryser found that protein disulfide isomerase inhibitors limited HIV-1 entry into T cells . Ozone directly inactivates viruses.” , Reduced sulfhydryl appears essential for Ebola virus to enter cells.
Based on the foregoing Rowen surmised that ozone therapy might be the ideal treatment for deadly Ebola. On the invitation of the President of Sierra Leone, we traveled to the country in fall 2014 to bring ozone therapy to the epidemic. Our team managed to get to 5 cases of Ebola, two in physicians, one in the female consort of a physician who died of the disease, and two exposed aides. All survived without any deterioration of symptoms after ozone therapy began, nor did they have any post Ebola complications. The epidemic claimed 60% of its victims and scarred survivors with a 70+% rate of complications. The key method was directly administering oxygen/ozone gas intravenously (DIV), 20 cc at 55 mcg/cc ozone over a few minutes. The material cost is negligible, and leaves virtually no medical waste – only a small 27g butterfly needle.
The treatment requires an ozone generator, medical grade compressed oxygen, and a syringe. The generator can be run off a car battery in remote areas. Ozone therapy is exceptionally safe . Direct intravenous gas administration does carry a risk of temporary chest tightness and cough, and can irritate veins. Compared to a lethal disease, however, it is a negligible price to pay. DIV has been routinely (and safely) used around the world for generations, with significant positive effects on modulating inflammation. , Oxygen is a metabolic gas and is rapidly consumed, unlike “air” which is 80% nitrogen. OT is also performed by withdrawing blood into a bottle, adding gas, and reinfusing.
Like Ebola, corona virus structure also has regions rich in cysteine. Alterations of these residues has been found to “cripple” virus growth properties at least 2 logs lower than wild type virus. Active cysteine is essential for membrane fusion. This is consistent with the sulfhydryl research mentioned above.
Cysteine is highly vulnerable to oxidation to disulfide or other residues; which effect will cripple its biochemical activity in proteins. Enzymes may become inactive when reduced sulfhydryl groups are oxidized.Ozone itself will oxidize SH groups instantly on contact. But less reactive ozonides, the product of blood ozone therapy, also accomplish this action(and can persist for days in the blood, providing ongoing protection). This was reported in ozonide attack on cysteine dependent papain, believed to inactivate the enzyme by oxidizing the active sulfhydryl to sulfenate or sulfenic acid.
Ozonide drugs are now postulated to possibly remedy the growing resistance of plasmodium to artemisinin, which molecule carries a rare natural oxidizing endoperoxide bridge as its active site. Industry is searching for drugs of this class, while a direct method of creating endogenous ozonides, ozone therapy, has been utilized for a century carrying an excellent background of researched effects and safety, and costs pennies, depending on how and where administered.
Few in our field are not familiar with the great 1918 influenza pandemic. However, few are also aware that inexpensive intravenous hydrogen peroxide was utilized by British physician Oliver in India, who halved the death rate from influenza pneumonia.
Ozone’s challenge is that it does not bring profit to justify private research to advance it towards regulatory agency “approval”, a process requiring tens of millions of USD. Hence, few in the field are aware of it, and fewer will consider “unapproved” therapy even to save lives. Virtually all use is in private offices, where practitioners have no access to an institutional review board, now a requirement to gain acceptance of research for publication. Hence, advancement of the therapy languishes.
The world already has a most inexpensive, safe, and likely effective remedy for deadly viral diseases, which exploits their redox vulnerability at critical membrane cysteine sites. Ozone therapy could be easily deployed worldwide. This epidemic could provide a means to study ozone therapy very ethically by treating seriously ill patients, who might otherwise expire, with ozone therapy under the auspices of the institution’s review board. Governments should take notice.
Conflicts of interest:
No funding was provided for this manuscript. Authors have no conflicts of interest to report.