Citriodiol or Citrepel75 - what are they? and how will they help the pandemic?

Posted in Blog on 30th April 2020

Citriodiol or Citrepel75 what are they? and how will they help the pandemic?

The Ministry of Defence (MOD) is currently researching whether PMD, the commonly used active ingredient in over-the-counter insect repellents, destroys the novel coronavirus responsible for the COVID19 pandemic.

Citriodiol® and Citrepel75® are both forms of PMD. The PMD used in incognito spray, roll-on, suncream insect repellent, and new lotion, is Citrepel75: a highly concentrated form of PMD which is significantly purer than Citriodiol

How Does PMD Kill Viruses?

It is already established that PMD kills many viruses in seconds on the skin: ordinary coronaviruses; HIV; Hepatitis; West Nile virus; influenza; and more. This discovery, which has lain dormant in the years since the SARS outbreak has been uncovered by scientists in a bid to find COVID-19 protection solutions, especially in light of the global shortage of personal protective equipment (PPE). 

PMD can be applied to the skin, clothing, face masks and many other surfaces such as gloves to kill viruses. According to its patent, [i] “We have now found, surprisingly, that PMD also possesses antiviral properties.. to destroy or inactivate viruses. and in the manufacture of a medicament for the treatment of diseases caused by viruses having a lipid envelope. We provide a face mask comprising at least one protective layer impregnated or sprayed with PMD.”

Is Citrepel the same as Citriodiol?

The PMD manufactured by UK company Chemian Technology Limited, under the brand Citrepel®, is an exceptionally highly concentrated form of PMD, designed to give high levels of protection against insects. This also makes it a powerful weapon in the fight against coronavirus.

Ian Dell, founder and managing director of Chemian, manufacturer of PMD/ Citrepel, commented: “We have manufactured PMD as a safe and environmentally friendly insect repellent for 25 years. We are aware of the patent for its unusual side effect, namely that of destroying the SARS-coronavirus. Until the coronavirus pandemic, however, this effect had no real value and the patent was abandoned in 2013.

“Unlike hand sanitizer, which kills most bacteria and viruses on the hands at the time of application, but not beyond, PMD will potentially continue to destroy the coronavirus for up to six hours. This could have significant implications for helping contain the spread of the virus, particularly for medical and care workers, or anyone potentially exposed to the virus.”

What is being done with Citriodiol Now?

Citriodiol is currently being tested on the novel coronavirus by the MOD at Porton Down – the UK’s foremost biological testing research facility – to evaluate specifically whether the antiviral properties destroy or inactivates SARS-CoV-2 the virus causing the COVID-19 pandemic.

A PMD (p-menthane 3,8-diol) product is already being used by the troops as an insect repellent, and if the research is positive, products will be made available to keyworkers in the front line battling COVID-19 e.g. NHS staff. Though right now anyone can use any of the insect repellents that contain PMD.

incognito mosquito repellent has used PMD as its main active, in its biocidal lines, since the patent was granted in 2010 because it demonstrates 100% efficacy against mosquitoes and other insects. Whereas the original citronella spray tested 82% effective on African mosquitoes by the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine.


[i] EP 1 748 769 B1, ANTIVIRAL COMPOSITION COMPRISING P-MENTHANE-3,8-DIOL. Date of publication 15.12.2010. International application number: PCT/GB2005/000803. International publication number: WO 2005/087209 (22.09.2005 Gazette 2005/38)

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