Article

Effects of temperature and humidity on the efficacy of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus challenged antimicrobial materials containing silver and copper.

Copper Development Association Inc., New York, NY 10016, USA.
Letters in Applied Microbiology (Impact Factor: 1.63). 04/2009; 49(2):191-5. DOI: 10.1111/j.1472-765X.2009.02637.x
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT To compare silver and copper, metals with known antimicrobial properties, by evaluating the effects of temperature and humidity on efficacy by challenging with methicillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA).
Using standard methodology described in a globally used Japanese Industrial Standard, JIS Z 2801, a silver ion-containing material exhibited >5 log reduction in MRSA viability after 24 h at >90% relative humidity (RH) at 20 degrees C and 35 degrees C but only a <0.3 log at approximately 22% RH and 20 degrees C and no reduction at approximately 22% RH and 35 degrees C. Copper alloys demonstrated >5 log reductions under all test conditions.
While the high humidity (>90% RH) and high temperature (35 degrees C) utilized in JIS Z 2801 produce measurable efficacy in a silver ion-containing material, it showed no significant response at lower temperature and humidity levels typical of indoor environments.
The high efficacy levels displayed by the copper alloys, at temperature and humidity levels typical of indoor environments, compared to the low efficacy of the silver ion-containing material under the same conditions, favours the use of copper alloys as antimicrobial materials in indoor environments such as hospitals.

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