Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:


Food preservative neutralizes anthrax spores


Nisin, a commonly used food preservative effectively neutralizes anthrax spores and could be used to decontaminate skin in the event of exposure. Researchers from Biosynexus, Inccorporated report their findings today at the 2005 American Society for Microbiology Biodefense Research Meeting.

"Contamination of human skin with even a few spores may potentially disseminate disease beyond the initial area of attack," says John Kokai-Kun, a researcher on the study. "There is currently nothing specifically approved for decontaminating human skin of anthrax spores."

Nisin is a natural antimicrobial peptide used as a preservative in heat-processed and low pH foods. It is derived from the controlled fermentation of the naturally occurring milk bacteria Lactococcus lactis. Nisin was awarded the Generally Regarded as Safe (GRAS) designation in the U.S. Federal Register of April, 1988 and is approved as a natural food preservative in the United States. It is also being used in the dairy industry as a topical treatment for mastitis.

Kokai-Kun and his colleagues tested the ability of nisin to neutralize spores of both anthrax and a related microbe, Bacillus cereus. Spores were pre-treated with nisin and then given variety of tests, including their ability to germinate and to cause disease in mice. While untreated spores in a control group were able to germinate and grow in culture and cause lethal infection in mice, the treated spores remained dormant and caused no apparent disease.

The next step for the researchers is to formulate a delivery system. One that appears to have promise is an impregnated wipe. A similar product, with a much lower concentration of nisin than would be necessary against anthrax is already available commercially for treating mastitis in cows. Other options include a topical cream or a foam.

"Given the capacity of nisin to neutralize spores, its common topical use on animals and its GRAS status, we are developing nisin-based formulations for decontamination of human skin exposed to anthrax spores," says Kokai-Kun.

Jim Sliwa | EurekAlert!
Further information:

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Strong, steady forces at work during cell division
20.10.2016 | University of Massachusetts at Amherst

nachricht Disturbance wanted
20.10.2016 | Max Delbrück Center for Molecular Medicine in the Helmholtz Association

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: New 3-D wiring technique brings scalable quantum computers closer to reality

Researchers from the Institute for Quantum Computing (IQC) at the University of Waterloo led the development of a new extensible wiring technique capable of controlling superconducting quantum bits, representing a significant step towards to the realization of a scalable quantum computer.

"The quantum socket is a wiring method that uses three-dimensional wires based on spring-loaded pins to address individual qubits," said Jeremy Béjanin, a PhD...

Im Focus: Scientists develop a semiconductor nanocomposite material that moves in response to light

In a paper in Scientific Reports, a research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute describes a novel light-activated phenomenon that could become the basis for applications as diverse as microscopic robotic grippers and more efficient solar cells.

A research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) has developed a revolutionary, light-activated semiconductor nanocomposite material that can be used...

Im Focus: Diamonds aren't forever: Sandia, Harvard team create first quantum computer bridge

By forcefully embedding two silicon atoms in a diamond matrix, Sandia researchers have demonstrated for the first time on a single chip all the components needed to create a quantum bridge to link quantum computers together.

"People have already built small quantum computers," says Sandia researcher Ryan Camacho. "Maybe the first useful one won't be a single giant quantum computer...

Im Focus: New Products - Highlights of COMPAMED 2016

COMPAMED has become the leading international marketplace for suppliers of medical manufacturing. The trade fair, which takes place every November and is co-located to MEDICA in Dusseldorf, has been steadily growing over the past years and shows that medical technology remains a rapidly growing market.

In 2016, the joint pavilion by the IVAM Microtechnology Network, the Product Market “High-tech for Medical Devices”, will be located in Hall 8a again and will...

Im Focus: Ultra-thin ferroelectric material for next-generation electronics

'Ferroelectric' materials can switch between different states of electrical polarization in response to an external electric field. This flexibility means they show promise for many applications, for example in electronic devices and computer memory. Current ferroelectric materials are highly valued for their thermal and chemical stability and rapid electro-mechanical responses, but creating a material that is scalable down to the tiny sizes needed for technologies like silicon-based semiconductors (Si-based CMOS) has proven challenging.

Now, Hiroshi Funakubo and co-workers at the Tokyo Institute of Technology, in collaboration with researchers across Japan, have conducted experiments to...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>



Event News

#IC2S2: When Social Science meets Computer Science - GESIS will host the IC2S2 conference 2017

14.10.2016 | Event News

Agricultural Trade Developments and Potentials in Central Asia and the South Caucasus

14.10.2016 | Event News

World Health Summit – Day Three: A Call to Action

12.10.2016 | Event News

Latest News

Innovative technique for shaping light could solve bandwidth crunch

20.10.2016 | Physics and Astronomy

Finding the lightest superdeformed triaxial atomic nucleus

20.10.2016 | Physics and Astronomy

NASA's MAVEN mission observes ups and downs of water escape from Mars

20.10.2016 | Physics and Astronomy

More VideoLinks >>>