15 October 2021

Danish inhalation treatment for COVID-19 approved for human testing


A new treatment for COVID-19 developed by Danish researchers at the University of Copenhagen and Rigshospitalet has now been approved by the Danish Medicines Agency for clinical testing on humans.

Coronavirus particles
(Photo: Colourbox)

The treatment, which is based on inhalation of particles that inactivate viruses and kill bacteria and fungi, is the result of a collaboration between the Danish researchers and the Norwegian medtech company SoftOx.

Professor Thomas Bjarnsholt from the Department of Clinical Microbiology at Rigshospitalet and the Department of Immunology and Microbiology at the University of Copenhagen is the one who got the idea for the new treatment principle. He hopes it will become a game changer in treatment for respiratory infections on a more general level.

‘Even though we now have several vaccines for COVID-19, we still need new and different treatment methods for people in hospital with the disease’, Thomas Bjarnsholt explains.

‘The patient will inhale a mild acid solution that helps the immune system fight respiratory infections caused by bacteria or viruses. We also hope to be able to use the treatment to fight other infections such as pneumonia, influenza and tuberculosis – diseases which kill millions of people globally each year’, Thomas Bjarnsholt explains.

Based on wound treatment

The Norwegian company SoftOx Solutions has patented the treatment, and they are the ones who will continue work on it by testing it on humans. But it all began in Thomas Bjarnsholt’s laboratory. Professor Thomas Bjarnsholt

‘The idea for this kind of treatment comes from our previous research into the ability of acid solutions to fight infections in wounds. It is the same idea which has now been refined and converted into inhalation treatment for fighting infections in the respiratory tract’, Thomas Bjarnsholt explains.

After having completed the preliminary tests for treatment of wound infections, the laboratory entered into a collaboration with SoftOx Solutions which was able to provide a stable acid solution. The combination of Thomas Bjarnsholt and colleagues’ patents and SoftOx Solution’s patents has subsequently developed into possible treatments for wound infection.     

Clinical testing is a step forwards

The upcoming human trials bring the inhalation treatment a step closer to becoming an option available to patients suffering from COVID-19. 

’It is a big day for us. Our inhalation treatment is on its way to becoming a reality. And hopefully the trials will show that the treatment is safe to use on humans’, says Thomas Bjarnsholt.

Thomas Bjarnsholt is affiliated with SoftOx Solutions as scientific advisor, he has stock options in the company, and he sits on the advisory board.

Read more at SoftOx Solutions: https://soft-ox.com/


Professor Thomas Bjarnsholt
+45 20 65 98 88