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Trophy for Innovation 2014

World Innovation Day

MetalSkin Medical® antibacterial technology

antimicrobial copper

A composite material with an alloy of at least 92% pure copper, the effectiveness of which has been validated by two distinct studies. Studies are being conducted for testing a series of bacteria and virus, according to various protocols and especially by stimulating successive recontamination. The results will be announced shortly.

  • An in-vivo clinical study conducted in the St Roch polyclinic at Montpellier under the authority of Pr JP Daures, (Director of the Biostatistics, Epidemiology, Clinical research and Health Economics unit of the Faculty of Medicine in Montpellier).
  • An in-vitro study in a certified independent laboratory confirming the mortality rate of bacteria (3.65 log reduction in 1 hour for E. Coli).

In-vitro microbiology test on Escherichia Coli: AQMC Laboratory

(Healthcare Control and Environmental Laboratories, 34130 Saint-Aunès)

The clinical study conducted by MetalSkin Medical® at the Saint-Roch polyclinic of Montpellier shows how it can curb bacterial proliferation. Moreover, an overall reduction of bacteria is witnessed during this period. These in-vivo measures are corroborated by in-vitro experiments. For example, Escheria Coli, the bacteria responsible for gastroenteritis, was exposed to MetalSkin Medical®.

9000 CFU was applied to a surface coated with the MetalSkin Medical® composite and the same amount was applied to a smooth and frequently used plastic material.

At the end of an hour, the following measurements were taken:

  • on the plastic plate: 1300 CFU,
  • on MetalSkin Medical: 2.

After 1 and a half hours, the following values were obtained respectively:

  • 3300 CFU,
  • versus 1.5.

It is therefore a self-sustaining decontamination process that ensures the extraordinarily rapid destruction and non-proliferation of bacteria.

In-vivo Microbiology Test: Clinical study at the SAINT-ROCH polyclinic of Montpellier

A technical and logistic partnership with Oc Santé, the first private healthcare network in Languedoc-Roussillon, which brings together and manages 13 healthcare institutions, was created for carrying out an in-vivo clinical study in the orthopaedics department from January to March 2013. This study took place following the in-vitro study carried out on Escherichia Coli with the AQMC laboratory.

antimicrobial copper
antimicrobial copper

Sampling Method

The healthcare department of the Oc Santé Group, in collaboration with the OC Biologie laboratory, developed a highly detailed study protocol on the action of the MetalSkin Medical® composite under the authority of Pr JP Daures, (Director of the Biostatistics, Epidemiology, Clinical research and Health Economics unit of the Faculty of Medicine in Montpellier).

In 3 departmental rooms, 7 elements were treated with MetalSkin Medical®:

  • the outer handle of the entrance door,
  • the inner handle,
  • the entrance switch,
  • the adjustable tray,
  • the mixer tap control in the bathroom,
  • the support bar in the shower,
  • the lavatory seat.

All of these previously existing elements were removed, treated and reassembled.
An extensive sampling campaign was conducted in these rooms. It included 4 sampling operations per week. 3 other control rooms were not treated.

Analysis Method

1344 samples were analysed in all for this study, which lasted for 8 weeks.

Average count of CFU on MetalSkin Medical® versus the control
Gross value analysis (without sampling area/treatment)

Analysed contact surfaces Average CFU count of control elements (range) Average CFU count of MetalSkin Medical® elements (range) % of MetalSkin Medical® count/Control count (range) P value of Wilcoxon Test P value of Mann-Whitney Test
Door handle (corridor) 6 (0-17) 0 (0-10) 0% (0-233) 0.02524 0.00964
Door handle (room) 6 (0-18) 0 (0-9) 0% (0-300) 0.00014 0.00002
Entrance switch (room) 8 (0-16) 0 (0-10) 0% (0-350) 0.00008 0.00002
Support bar (shower) 13 (0-44) 8 (0-25) 61% (3-300) 0.00291 0.00449
Lavatory seat 7 (0-31) 0 (0-12) 0% (0-1200) 0.19863 0.23713
Mixer tap 9 (0-20) 6 (0-18) 73% (0-480) 0.00646 0.02163
Adjustable tray 10 (0-21) 0 (0-10) 0% (0-450) 0.00046 0.00002

Trend line and Statistical results

  • 100% of the MetalSkin Medical® coated elements shelter fewer bacteria compared to their untreated counterparts.
  • In 71% of the cases, these elements are even devoid of bacteria,
  • The mortality rate and speed of bacteria are identical to those of solid copper,
  • The performances are consistent regardless of the support material,
  • Even in case of excessive bacterial contamination, MetalSkin Medical® shows effective action over time.
  • Between the first and last day of the study, the total number of CFU counted in the orthopaedic department was divided by 3, (-0.3 log) regardless of the type of the element, which shows a form of “decontamination” and therefore a direct and significant reduction in health risks.

Antibacterial Copper Study results - health sector

Cleaning and disinfection

The formulation of composite guarantees excellent resistance to maintenance and disinfection products and to wear and tear in general. In fact, the use of high quality resins in the production of the composite containing 92% pure copper (higher than the percentage found in antibacterial alloys, which contain 60 to 88% of copper), makes it a durable material having excellent resistance to impacts and abrasion.

With the maintenance and disinfection protocol remaining constant, several studies have observed a 40% reduction in the nosocomial risk in the hospital environment due to the use of copper.
The graphite colour helps in obtaining a significant visual contrast and hides the natural phenomenon of oxidation.
A wide range of applications on new products as well as reconditioned elements helps in increasing the antibacterial contact surfaces in the various departments of the health institution.

What can be treated with MetalSkin Medical®?

In simple words, any element that can be touched can be treated in order to curb cross-transmission by contact surfaces. The base material is relatively less important since the technological process allows sticking on all kinds of support. A good amount of stiffness is however required to ensure controlled ageing.
In rooms, it is recommended to treat switches, door and window handles, tap controls, support bars, flush buttons, lavatory seats, dining tables with movable trays, serum-holders, bed bars, control handles for inclining the bed, armrests, drawer knobs, etc.