Cellulotech, a company focused on research and development around cellulose, today announced that paper treated with the team’s revolutionary chromatogeny technology has passed the blood/fluid resistance (ASTM F1862) test in an independent United States laboratory. This test demonstrates the treated paper’s water barrier capabilities, paving the way for medical use, as per the current Food and Drug Administration requirements, furthering Cellulotech’s ultimate goals of offering a technological paper-based solution to the material shortage in mask production. These results come after Cellulotech’s technology successfully passed filtration and breathability tests in France, allowing mask production and distribution in the country.

Chromatogeny, discovered and pioneered by Cellulotech’s Chief Scientist, Dr. Daniel Samain, is a green chemistry process that makes any cellulose-based material permanently hydrophobic without affecting the breathability of the material and keeping all its recyclability and compostability properties. Given that cellulose is the most abundant renewable compound on earth, chromatogeny creates a gateway of opportunity for several industries – such as packaging, healthcare, consumer products, fashion or construction – that require the use of paper in different capacities. The eco-friendly material has the potential to save millions of tons of paper as well as replace unsustainable and harmful coatings and chemicals at a much lower cost.

“The news that chromatogeny-treated paper has passed the ASTM F1862 test is an exciting external validation for our chromatogeny technology, and further supports our mission of using treated paper as a way to provide rapidly and massively affordable and effective masks for both individual and medical use,” said Romain Metivet, Chief Executive Officer of Cellulotech. “We have now confirmed our technology could help solve the impending personal mask shortage quickly and provide effective and sustainable protection for all, to ultimately combat the spread of COVID-19.”

The ASTM F1862 is a standard test method that proves the resistance of medical face masks and materials to penetration by synthetic blood. The passing of this test validates the potential of chromatogeny-treated paper as an effective alternative for the mass production of face or surgical masks. This is particularly crucial as capacity and geopolitical issues have arisen, causing complications in the production and procurement of traditionally-used melt-blown fabric. The masks are also much more environmentally friendly than traditional surgical masks, which take around 400 years to biodegrade.

Cellulotech has the capability to work with paper manufacturers worldwide to help combat the global mask shortage. The chromatogeny treatment is both affordable, already industrialized and easy to implement, with the total cost of treating paper estimated to be between 0.1 and 0.2 cents, per mask. Chromatogeny can also be applied to enhancing other PPE shortages – such as gowns and mask filters. A chromatogeny-treated paper mask is also a better alternative to cloth masks, which offer no liquid barrier protection, and capture droplets that can penetrate by capillarity and contaminate the wearer, with very uncertain filtration efficiency.

Cellulotech’s chromatogeny technology has been tested by Switzerland’s SGS, the world’s leading inspection, verification, testing and certification company, and has also passed a series of third-party laboratory tests in France.

Source: Company Press Release