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Application of Cu-FAU nanozeolites for decontamination of surfaces soiled with the ESKAPE pathogens

Redfern, J, Goldyn, K, Verran, J, Retoux, R, Tosheva, L and Mintova, S (2017) Application of Cu-FAU nanozeolites for decontamination of surfaces soiled with the ESKAPE pathogens. Microporous and Mesoporous Materials, 253. pp. 233-238. ISSN 1387-1811


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Antimicrobial resistance is a global threat with catastrophic forecasts in terms of human and economic losses. The so-called ESKAPE pathogens (Enterococcus species, Staphylococcus aureus, Klebsiella pneumoniae, Acinetobacter baumanii, Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Enterobacter species) represent a range of species of particular concern because they cause many serious hospital infections, and can show resistance toward available commercial antibiotics. Copper-containing zeolite nanocrystals (10e30 nm) with FAU-type structure (Cu-FAU), in the form of stable colloidal suspensions, were prepared at high yield in the absence of organic templates and studied for their activity against ESKAPE microorganisms. The materials were active against all six ESKAPE species. The survival of Staphylococcus aureus, Klebsiella pneumoniae and Pseudomonas aeruginosa on stainless-steel coupons after direct treatment with the CuFAU zeolite suspensions was determined quantitatively. Complete decontamination (5-log reduction in bacterial counts) was achieved within 20 min for P. aeruginosa, and within 10 min for the K. pneumoniae and S. aureus. This result is significant, particularly for sanitization of surfaces in healthcare settings, with the potential to initiate a new direction of research to help address the global antimicrobial resistance threat.

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