Consumers are becoming aware that solutions adding an antibacterial property to touch surfaces use hazardous substances. These substances or additives can be toxic for humans or have a disrupting impact on our environment, with the recent ban on Triclosan in hand soaps as an example. But Triclosan is also used in plastics and so are many other pesticides. The majority of these substances are leaching from the product to kill the bacteria, and they might end up on your food or in the air you breathe.
Technology for self-sanitizing products with an antibacterial property of up to 99% within 24 hours has been launched by Parx Plastics. The company has launched its first ready to use Saniconcentrates™ for manufacturers in Europe and the US. The technology developed is the world’s first antimicrobial solution without toxins or chemicals. It does not use chemicals such as Triclosan or heavy metals such as silver, nor does it use biocides, Nano-particles, quaternary salts or any other harmful substances. The antimicrobial property is achieved by making use of one of the most important trace elements in the human body. The trace element, present in our food, is essential for a healthy immune system and for building up and maintaining cells, hair, nails and skin. Absolute safety is guaranteed not only by the biocompatibility but also because the technology does not migrate. The antibacterial property is the result of an intrinsic change and not of leaching substances. The surface of a product becomes hostile to bacteria by means of a mere physical and mechanical action. The first materials taken into mass production at the Italian facility in Bologna are a Sani-ABS and a Saniconcentrate™ based on Eastman’s copolymer Tritan™. These are uniform grades used as a carrier incorporating the technology that mix at 3% with plain material of the same kind. The mixture brings forth a product with an antimicrobial property of up to 99%.
Sanipolymers™ offer Upto 99% effectiveness according to ISO 22196 and JISZ 2801. ISO 22196 and JIS Z 2801 are International Standard that specifies a method of evaluating the antibacterial activity of antibacterial-treated plastics, and other non-porous surfaces of products. Following these standards our materials show an antibacterial effectiveness level of up to 99%. The bacteria’s used for the tests are: Staphylococcus Aureus (gram+) a common bacteria that causes serious food poisoning, and the Escherichia coli (E.Coli)(gram-) which is a common cause of skin infections, respiratory disease and food poisoning.
The testing process
Flat plastic parts of 50x50x10 mm are prepared of treated and untreated material. A specified doses of the bacteria are placed on both the treated and untreated plastic parts and both are placed in incubation for 24 hours at 35°C and a relative humidity of no less than 90% (ideal conditions for bacteria to grow). After the incubation period the specimens are studied and the viable bacteria count is determined. A prescribed equation records the results showing the difference in viable bacteria on the treated and untreated plastic parts.
We have not just limited our tests to the above two bacteria’s. An equal effectiveness level has been observed for other bacteria, such as Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), Acinetobacter Baumannii, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Enterobacter cloacae, Clostridium difficile and Candida albicans.
High effective rate against:
Staphylococcus Aureus (gram+): Can cause serious food poisoning
Escherichia coli (E. Coli)(gram-): A common cause of skin infections, respiratory disease and food poisoning
Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) A bacterium responsible for several difficult-to-treat infections in humans
Acinetobacter Baumannii : A species of pathogenic bacteria, referred to as an aerobic gram-negative bacterium, that is resistant to most antibiotics
Pseudomonas aeruginosa : A common bacterium that can cause disease in animals and humans found in soil, water, skin flora.
Enterobacter cloacae: A clinically significant Gram-negative, facultatively-anaerobic, rod-shaped bacterium
Clostridium difficile: A species of Gram-positive bacteria of the genus Clostridium that causes severe diarrhea and other intestinal disease
Candida albicans: A fungus that grows both as yeast and filamentous cells and a causal agent of opportunistic oral and genital infections
100% SAFE - Cytotoxicity testing
Cytotoxicity is the ability of an (chemical) agent to cause physical or biological damage to human cells. Bacteria and human cells differ in several ways. One way in which bacteria and human cells differ is that bacteria contain a cell wall that surrounds their cell membrane. Human cells do not have cell walls. Unlike other antibacterial solutions our antibacterial effect is exclusively targeted at the bacterial cell walls called peptidoglycan and essentially breaks it down, causing the bacteria to lyse and die (or inhibit bacterial cell division). This means the Parx Plastics Sanipolymers are not cytotoxic and they are fully safe in contact with humans and nature.
Safe for foodstuff
Migration tests were conducted according to the “Regulation (EU) No. 10/2011 on plastic materials and articles intended to come into contact with food”. The tests are to verify both the durability of the material and specifically the compatibility of the material for applications that come in contact with foodstuff. The above-mentioned EU regulation prescribes that plastic materials and articles shall not release specific materials in quantities exceeding 25 mg/kg food or food simulant.