Aims: To investigate the potent control of microbial surface contamination of an innovative process which consists in incorporating metal oxide microspheres homogeneously into materials.
Methods and results: Spherical microspheres containing zinc and magnesium oxides synthesized via a one-step manufacturing process (Pyrolyse Pulvérisée® ) and incorporated into different plastic matrices were evaluated for their antimicrobial activity according to JIS Z 2801 standard. A significant activity was observed for microsphere-added polyethylene coupons with a reduction of all tested bacteria populations, including Gram negative and Gram positive even expressing acquired antibiotic resistance (Escherichia coli ESBL, Staphylococcus aureus metiR). An antiviral activity higher than 2 log of reduction was also observed on H1N1 and HSV-1 viruses. This antimicrobial effect was dose-dependent and time-dependent for both polyethylene and polypropylene matrices. Antimicrobial activity was maintained after exposition to disinfectants and totally preserved 50 months after the preparation of the coupons.
Conclusions: Incorporated into plastic matrices, metal oxide microspheres showed significant antibacterial and antiviral activities.
Significance and impact of study: This is, to our knowledge, the first report on an original process incorporating metal oxide microspheres, which have specific physico-chemical and antimicrobial properties, into materials that could be used for surface contamination prevention.
Keywords: antimicrobial activity; contamination prevention; metal oxide microspheres; resistant bacteria; viruses.
© 2018 The Society for Applied Microbiology.