Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Study shows copper could help control MRSA contamination

06.07.2004


A new study by scientists at the University of Southampton suggests that MRSA contamination can be reduced by using copper alloys for surfaces in healthcare facilities.



Methicillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) is a virulent organism, essentially resistant to all beta-lactam antibiotics (for example: penicillins, ampicillins, cephalosporins). It can cause skin, bone and life-threatening blood infections, as well as pneumonia.

In a study co-funded by the International Copper Association and Copper Development Association Inc., New York, Professor Bill Keevil, Head of the Environmental Healthcare Unit in the University of Southampton’s School of Biological Sciences, and Dr Jonathan Noyce examined the survival rates of the organism on stainless steel, the most commonly used metal in healthcare facilities, and on selected copper alloys.


Their findings, which were reported recently at a meeting of the American Society for Microbiology in New Orleans, showed that at room temperature, MRSA was able to persist and remain viable in dried deposits on stainless steel for periods up to 72 hours.

For copper alloys containing 55 per cent, 80 per cent, and 99 per cent copper, significant reductions in viability were achieved after four and a half hours, three hours, and one and a half hours, respectively. Yellow brass rendered the bacteria completely inviable after 270 minutes, while the high-copper alloy took only 90 minutes.

‘Our results strongly indicate that use of the copper metals in such applications as door knobs, push plates, fittings, fixtures and work surfaces would considerably mitigate MRSA in hospitals and reduce the risk of cross-contamination between staff and patients in critical care areas,’ said Professor Keevil.

‘However, despite the significant performance of copper alloys in our study, we also noted that the survivability of MRSA on all metals at lower temperatures is much greater, indicating that hygiene is particularly imperative in those environments.’

Professor Keevil added that the antimicrobial effects of copper have been well documented. ‘Recent studies on E. coli O157 and Listeria monocytogenes on copper alloy surfaces show similar dramatic results, reducing viability of those pathogens from several weeks on stainless steel to only a matter of hours on copper alloys,’ he said.

Sarah Watts | alfa
Further information:
http://www.soton.ac.uk

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Fine organic particles in the atmosphere are more often solid glass beads than liquid oil droplets
21.04.2017 | Max-Planck-Institut für Chemie

nachricht Study overturns seminal research about the developing nervous system
21.04.2017 | University of California - Los Angeles Health Sciences

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Deep inside Galaxy M87

The nearby, giant radio galaxy M87 hosts a supermassive black hole (BH) and is well-known for its bright jet dominating the spectrum over ten orders of magnitude in frequency. Due to its proximity, jet prominence, and the large black hole mass, M87 is the best laboratory for investigating the formation, acceleration, and collimation of relativistic jets. A research team led by Silke Britzen from the Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy in Bonn, Germany, has found strong indication for turbulent processes connecting the accretion disk and the jet of that galaxy providing insights into the longstanding problem of the origin of astrophysical jets.

Supermassive black holes form some of the most enigmatic phenomena in astrophysics. Their enormous energy output is supposed to be generated by the...

Im Focus: A Quantum Low Pass for Photons

Physicists in Garching observe novel quantum effect that limits the number of emitted photons.

The probability to find a certain number of photons inside a laser pulse usually corresponds to a classical distribution of independent events, the so-called...

Im Focus: Microprocessors based on a layer of just three atoms

Microprocessors based on atomically thin materials hold the promise of the evolution of traditional processors as well as new applications in the field of flexible electronics. Now, a TU Wien research team led by Thomas Müller has made a breakthrough in this field as part of an ongoing research project.

Two-dimensional materials, or 2D materials for short, are extremely versatile, although – or often more precisely because – they are made up of just one or a...

Im Focus: Quantum-physical Model System

Computer-assisted methods aid Heidelberg physicists in reproducing experiment with ultracold atoms

Two researchers at Heidelberg University have developed a model system that enables a better understanding of the processes in a quantum-physical experiment...

Im Focus: Glacier bacteria’s contribution to carbon cycling

Glaciers might seem rather inhospitable environments. However, they are home to a diverse and vibrant microbial community. It’s becoming increasingly clear that they play a bigger role in the carbon cycle than previously thought.

A new study, now published in the journal Nature Geoscience, shows how microbial communities in melting glaciers contribute to the Earth’s carbon cycle, a...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Expert meeting “Health Business Connect” will connect international medical technology companies

20.04.2017 | Event News

Wenn der Computer das Gehirn austrickst

18.04.2017 | Event News

7th International Conference on Crystalline Silicon Photovoltaics in Freiburg on April 3-5, 2017

03.04.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

New quantum liquid crystals may play role in future of computers

21.04.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

A promising target for kidney fibrosis

21.04.2017 | Health and Medicine

Light rays from a supernova bent by the curvature of space-time around a galaxy

21.04.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>