Antimicrobial Technologies


What does antimicrobial mean?

An antimicrobial technology attacks and kills microorganisms. The description "microorganisms" is a collective term for various microscopic living organisms and refers, among other things, to the most diverse types of bacteria, fungi, algae and, in this context, also viruses.

Difference between an antibacterial and antimicrobial technology

While an antimicrobial technology is effective against a broad range of different microorganisms, i.e., against bacteria, viruses, fungi and algae, an antibacterial technology is only effective against bacteria. Even though the terms are often used synonymously, there is a clear distinction in the breadth of the effect.

Why do we need innovative antimicrobial technologies?

  • Microorganisms are a threat to human health.
    • 11 million people die annually from sepsis, mostly triggered by bacteria, equivalent to 20% of all deaths.
    • Danger especially in sensitive areas, such as nursing homes or hospitals.
    • Rising antibiotic resistance.
  • Microorganisms cause economic damage of about US$ 500 billion annually.
  • Selection of biocides decreases enormously due to stricter regulations
    • Many existing technologies affected, such as silver ion technologies.

What types of antimicrobial technologies exist?

Antimicrobial technologies are used to kill or inhibit the growth of microorganisms such as bacteria, viruses, fungi, and algae. Known antimicrobial technologies are based, for example, on the release of metal ions, such as silver or copper, the release of organic substances, e.g., CMIT/MIT, or quaternary ammonium compounds. The class of in situ generated free radicals represents a new and innovative antimicrobial technology. The mentioned substances can either be incorporated as antimicrobial additives into products to be protected, as in the case of the organic or radical-based technologies, or applied directly as antimicrobial coatings, as the metal-based technologies.

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