I’ve been reading some research abstracts about new and different technologies to be used in germ fighting.  They are basically oxidized metallic elements that destroy organic compounds on contact.  Read on.

With the increased use of antibiotics has come the rise of the superbug.  Immune to traditional antibacterial products.  You’re picturing a hospital or healthcare setting in your mind.  But think of this.  Some guy in a far away country has some horrendous bug.  He walks through the airport coughing, sneezing, and wiping his hands all over stuff.  Hundreds of unsuspecting people follow him and get on airplanes headed all over the world.  Viola, worldwide spread of this germ in less than twenty four hours.  Hence, the need for new means of wiping these bacteria offs the planet.  At least out of our hospitals.  Behold, titanium dioxide. 

Real simple.  Titanium dioxide, when bombarded with ultraviolet light, reacts with water and oxygen in the atmosphere to produce hydroxyl radicals and superoxide anions. These radicals and anions then react upon contact with organic compounds, like bacteria, and break these organics down into basic carbon dioxide.  Harmless.  You can apply this material to a hospital floor or an airport escalator.  And it works. 

We said earlier that the TIO2 needs to be hit with ultra-violet light to work.  But that was then, and this is now.  Recent experiments have shown that TIO2 is effective using safe levels of visible light.  And, because the TIO2 is stable and inert, meaning it doesn’t break down or get used up, it can be continuously working as long as it’s exposed to light.  In many environments we can control the amount of light the compound is exposed to, and thus control, or even turn on and off, the effectiveness of the product. 

If you are a clinical specialist and want all the details of the scientific research, this information was taken from an article titled “The effects of the bacterial interaction with visible-light responsive titania photocatalyst on bactericidal performance” in the Journal of Biomedical Science.  If you are a hospital administrator, your interest might be more in that TIO2 products can be effectively used in your facility to control bacteria and viruses.  And that these products are available now.  Check it out!