Alcohol-based Gel

OIST students Sébastien Lapointe and Sandrine Burriel and their team have followed guidelines provided by the World Health Organization to begin production of a disinfecting gel with hopes of distributing it to health care facilities around Okinawa.

Updated May 7, 2020

Project members delivered the solution to several locations in Onna Village.

Project members with Onna Village mayor
Onna Village recipients with OIST gel

Updated May 1, 2020

OIST PhD student Sébastien Lapointe delivered 60L of gel to Okinawa Chubu Hospital.

OIST researcher delivering gel to hospital

Updated April 22, 2020

Led by OIST PhD students Sébastien Lapointe, from the Coordination Chemistry and Catalysis Unit, and Sandrine Burriel, from the Cell Signal Unit, a project is underway to supply the campus, Onna Village and Chubu Hospital with an increased amount of much needed alcohol-based gel. Called ‘OIST gel’, this solution is produced in accordance with the World Health Organization’s ‘Guidelines on Hand Hygiene in Healthcare’.

“Although handwashing with soap and water for 20 seconds or more is more effective than using an alcohol-based gel, it is not always possible to do so while on essential outings such as grocery shopping,” said Sébastien. “In these cases, the alcohol-based gel is a useful alternative to reduce virus spread.”

The team currently aims to produce at least 400 liters of OIST gel. 50 liters will be for within the OIST community, while the rest will be donated to the local Onna community and Chubu Hospital. Supplies have been received to the OIST campus and production began in mid-April.

“This project has 25 volunteers from various OIST units and backgrounds,” said Sandrine. “Those with the necessary laboratory safety training will make and bottle the gel. Other volunteers have designed the label and are coordinating with local organizations to make sure the gel can be safely and effectively distributed.”

Photo of the 12 male and female members of the OIST gel team.
The OIST gel project has 25 volunteers in total. Here some of them display the gel in bottles.
The OIST gel project has 25 volunteers in total. Here some of them display the gel in bottles.