MONTREAL - Sanuvox Technologies Inc. reports that it has been receiving many inquiries regarding the use of ultraviolet air purification systems to combat the avian flu. Sanuvox says UV systems can be used as a prevention tool to limit the spread of influenza in working and public environments.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), there are many different subtypes of type A influenza viruses. Sanuvox says that when we talk about "bird flu" viruses, we are referring to influenza A subtypes chiefly found in birds. They do not usually infect humans, even though we know they can. When we talk about "human flu viruses," we are referring to those subtypes that occur widely in humans. It is likely that some genetic parts of current human influenza A viruses came from birds originally. Influenza A viruses are constantly changing, and they might adapt over time to infect and spread among humans. For more information on avian influenza, visit the CDC Web site at

Sanuvox says its ultraviolet air purification systems have been tested and used in a number of applications, from residential systems to commercial/industrial indoor air quality applications. The Sanuvox proprietary UV process uses a specially designed 19 mm high-intensity ultraviolet quartz lamp that produces UVC (254 nm) and UVV (185 nm) light (both wavelengths are fused into the lamp). UVC is short-wave radiation; it attacks the DNA of a cell. This wavelength's primary uses are for the destruction of viruses, bacteria, mold, and other microorganisms that pass through the system. The CDC recommends this method for destroying viruses such as tuberculosis. UVV is primarily used for oxidization; this is the portion of the lamp that will destroy chemicals and odors such as cigarette smoke, VOCs, diesel fumes, odors, and formaldehyde.

According to Dr. Normand Brais, president of Sanuvox Technologies, "The avian flu virus is a variation of influenza. Influenza requires 3,400 microwatts of UVC energy for complete destruction, a fraction of what is needed to destroy tuberculosis at 10,000 microwatts. Sanuvox ultraviolet air purification systems have been tested and found to be up to 99.9 percent effective in destroying airborne tuberculosis, which is almost three times more resilient than influenza. As a result, should the avian flu virus be airborne, a properly sized Sanuvox ultraviolet air purifier (taking into account air velocity, size of ductwork, and/or application) can destroy the avian flu virus should it pass through the UV system."

The company says independent research studies on ultraviolet air purification using Sanuvox UV systems can be found at

Publication date: 11/14/2005