Coats developing threads with HeiQ Covid-19 antiviral tech - Just Style
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Coats developing threads with HeiQ Covid-19 antiviral tech

By Beth Wright 11 Aug 2020

Industrial thread maker Coats is partnering with HeiQ to incorporate the Swiss speciality textile chemistry company's Viroblock technology into a new range of threads and engineered yarns.

Industrial thread maker Coats is partnering with HeiQ to incorporate the Swiss speciality textile chemistry company’s Viroblock technology into a new range of threads and engineered yarns.

HeiQ Viroblock is among the first textile technologies in the world to be proven effective in laboratory testing against SARS-CoV-2, the virus from the coronavirus family that causes Covid-19. It has been shown to be 99.99% effective in 30 minutes in tests conducted with the Peter Doherty Institute for Infection and Immunity in Melbourne, Australia.

Non-toxic and hypoallergenic, HeiQ Viroblock merges microsilver technology to attract virus particles which then combine with vesicle technology to break down the viral membrane within seconds. The microsilver technology uses recycled silver to enhance its sustainable offering, while the vesicle technology is bio-based.

The partnership, through which Coats has exclusive global access to the technology for use in sewing threads, will see technical experts at the firm’s Innovation Hub – America in North Carolina work to incorporate the technology into a new collection of threads and engineered yarns which will be suitable for application across a wide range of end-use products.

“The combination of HeiQ Viroblock technology with our specialist expertise in threads and yarns creates a powerful textile solution for the challenges we see today,” says Ronan Cox, president, Performance Materials, Coats. 

Carlo Centonze, co-founder and CEO of HeiQ Group, adds HeiQ Viroblock can be applied to any fabric to add an antiviral efficacy.

“Now with Coats threads and yarns, it is even possible for every stitch holding the fabric together to deliver the same effect, leaving no chance for harmful microorganisms.”

HeiQ Viroblock was proven effective in laboratory testing against SARS-CoV-2 in June, before being certified as safe and sustainable as all its ingredients are cosmetic grade, bio-based and recycled, a month later.

Research is ramping up around the world to develop new technologies that tap into growing demand for antimicrobial, virus and bacteria killing fibres and fabrics generated by the Covid-19 pandemic.

Centonze told just-style last month the crisis has “opened a whole new chapter for the development of antimicrobial surfaces and textiles.”