A Little Lesson in Disinfecting

A few weeks ago, I listened to a webinar by a prominent dentist.  She was talking enthusiastically about Hypochlorous Acid, also known by the acronym, HOCl, and how effective it is as a disinfectant.  She kept asking herself: “Where have I been for the last 30 years?  Why haven’t I been using HOCl to disinfect my offices?  When a dentist of 30 years is asking herself this question, it is no surprise the vast majority of us still know very little about it.

See, dentists around the world are highly exposed on a daily basis due to all the aerosols flying out of people’s mouths and into the air as their teeth are being cleaned.  It’s a real problem, and especially now with Covid-19.  But dentists aren’t the only ones that should be paying more attention to HOCl.  We can all benefit from this powerful disinfectant.  Of course, the Internet will provide you all the information you can absorb on this topic, but that takes time and effort, both of which we have a limited supply.  So, let’s dive in for just a few minutes and view it from 10,000 feet.

First, HOCl has been around as long as the human race and possibly even before.  It is naturally produced by our white blood cells to defend against invading pathogens.  This process is called Phagocytosis.  Second, in the 1870s, Michael Faraday discovered the laws of electrolysis (how HOCl is made). Third, in the 1970s, we figured out how to manufacture HOCl by our human hands.  That’s the short story of HOCl, and all you will ever need to know about its history!

HOCl is a species of chlorine.  In fact, it is the most effective species.  Hypochlorite (OCl-) is also a species of chlorine and is what Clorox uses in bleach.  Clorox, (originally The Clorox Company) has been around for 107 years now.  Drinking water has been chlorinated for approximately 100 years, so I think it is safe to say that chlorine works quite well as a disinfecting agent, and is an integral part of keeping us all healthy.

However, as noted above, not all chlorine is created equally.  HOCl is 80-100 times more effective than OCl- as a disinfecting agent.  You’ll see this research everywhere you look on the Internet. NIH says HOCl is 80-200 times more effective (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6255518/).  Why is this the case? (Don’t worry, this is not a chemistry lesson, and I am not a chemist, but we need to know just the basics😊) It really all comes down to pH.  The pH scale runs fom 0-14. Zero is acidic, 7 is neutral and 14 is alkaline.  Bleach is made at a very high pH (12-14), and has a negative charge, as its OCl- formula indicates.  HOCl, on the other hand, is made somewhere between 5-7 pH and has a neutral charge.  This simply means that HOCl is able to easily penetrate and disrupt the negative charge of most bacteria and OCl- can’t.  A negative charge repels from another negative charge.  A neutral charge is attracted to a negative charge.  That’s all there is to it.

So, my friends, there it is in a nutshell.  Don’t ask me why Clorox has not pounced on HOCl.  My suspicion is that when you operate successfully for 107 years, it is not wise to mess with a good thing.  Yes, there are certainly other factors, but this is the primary one, in my humble opinion.  HOCl works and it works very well.  It has been extremely well researched and documented over the last 50 years. As to Disinfexol, it is an EPA registered, hospital-grade cleaner and disinfectant (95747-1) and is made with only reverse osmosis water and HOCl.  It kills Human Coronavirus.  It is clean, non-toxic, safe and highly effective.  It is a product that will help make our world a safer place during these crazy times. This is a good recipe for success.


Ken Lovett, CEO