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This project is developing a nutritional supplement to support the immune system in the fight against infection by SARS-CoV-2


As part of the EIT’s Crisis Response Initiative, this activity directly contributes to the European Union’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The aim of SPIN project was to develop a nutritional supplement based on natural antiviral ingredients to support the immune system in the fight against infection by SARS-CoV-2.

Research suggests that SARS-CoV-2 infection limits autophagy by interfering with multiple metabolic pathways. Autophagy is the process by which a cell breaks down, and is an essential, natural, metabolic process which helps the recycling of cellular components. Importantly, autophagy can restrict viral replication.

The SPIN food supplement has been formulated to be rich in wheat germ polyamine, Spermidine, that plays a crucial role in favouring autophagy, and a broad-spectrum antiviral essential oil, rich in Eugenol, which acts by decreasing the ability of the virus to replicate. It would theoretically involve hindering or inhibiting the progression of the disease towards the more serious pulmonary forms, representing the existent mortality risk for those who contract SARS-CoV-2 and develop COVID-19.

This supplement was intended to cover the timeframe in which the vaccine was not available to all and in the period afterwards, to mitigate contagious and symptom severity with the use of a natural, antiviral approach. It is not intended to replace or enhance SARS-CoV-2 vaccines.

Project update

SPIN has developed an innovative food supplement which strengthens the human immune-system against SARS-CoV-2 infection by using natural antiviral ingredients. In September 2020, the SPIN food supplement was registered with the Italian Ministry of Food Health with the commercial name of EIT Viral.


Project lead

Giovanni Dinelli

Giovanni Dinelli

University of Bologna

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