Copper the antiviral SurfaceJune 23, 2020 2020-06-23 11:35
Copper the antiviral Surface
As with all things in life, it seems either someone or something extra ordinary has to happen to really gain momentum for a cause. Although scientists have warned public and governments about the impending dangers of disease-causing microbes for generations, it feels the covid-19 pandemic has really caused a shift towards action. Gerald Larrouy-Maumus senior Lecturer in Molecular Microbiology/Group Leader at MRC-CMBI chez Imperial College London has spoken about the potential for 10 million deaths per year as a potential death toll to microbes developing resistance to antibiotics.
“if we do nothing, 10 million people per year will die”
So what can we do…
Well some great thinking by Scientists like Larrouy-Maumus has suggested we don’t just fight them once they have transmitted to humans, we fight them on the surfaces they spread also.
“The surfaces we touch in our daily routine can be a vector of transmission, the virus that causes Covid-19 – Sars-CoV-2 – can live on cardboard for up to 24 hours, while on plastic and stainless steel it can remain active for up to three days”
By simply changing the texture of the surfaces we use, or coating them with substances that kill bacteria and viruses more quickly, some scientists hope it may be possible to defeat infectious organisms before they even get into our bodies. Larrouy-Maumus is betting on copper alloys. The ions in copper alloys are both antiviral and antibacterial, able to kill 99.9% of bacteria within 2 hours.
But why stop at surfaces we touch … What about the air we breathe?
Of course we can’t coat every surface we touch with copper but we can limit it to items like door handles and lift buttons etc. Perhaps another way to fight a virus might be with the air we breathe. The diManolo enhanced filter for the reusable mask has a special copper mesh & silver nanoparticle filter to the internal pocket. Meaning the copper mesh & silver nanoparticle filter are killing the bacteria you breathe in and destroying the harmful bacteria you are potentially be breathing out.
The effectiveness of copper is clear and know by many scientists, Keevil, a microbiology researcher at the University of Southampton (U.K.), has studied the antimicrobial effects of copper for more than two decades. He has watched in his laboratory as the simple metal slew one bad bug after another. He began with the bacteria that causes Legionnaire’s Disease and then turned to drug-resistant killer infections like Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA). He tested viruses that caused worldwide health scares such as Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) and the Swine Flu (H1N1) pandemic of 2009. In each case, copper contact killed the pathogen within minutes. “It just blew it apart,” he says.
In 2015, Keevil turned his attention to Coronavirus 229E, a relative of the COVID-19 virus that causes the common cold and pneumonia. Once again, copper zapped the virus within minutes while it remained infectious for five days on surfaces such as stainless steel or glass.
The data and information for this article was taken from the below:
- https://www.smithsonianmag.com/science-nature/copper-virus-kill-180974655/ written by Jim Morrison is a freelance writer whose stories, reported from two dozen countries, have appeared in numerous publications including Smithsonian.com, the New York Times, and National Wildlife.
- https://www.bbc.com/future/article/20200529-the-surfaces-that-kill-bacteria-and-viruses/ written by Christine Ro a Freelance writer for BBC futures specialising in science.