Graphical abstract. Credit: Journal of Photochemistry and Photobiology B: Biology (2022). DOI: 10.1016/j.jphotobiol.2022.112551
Researchers at Queen’s University Belfast have developed a plastic film that can kill viruses that land on its surface with room light. The self-sterilizing film is the first of its kind—it is low cost to produce, can be readily scaled and could be used for disposable aprons, tablecloths, and curtains in hospitals. It is coated with a thin layer of particles that absorb UV light and produce reactive oxygen species—ROS. These kill viruses, including SARS-CoV-2.
The Queen’s researchers tested the film for anti-viral activity using four different viruses—two strains of influenza A virus, a highly-stable picornavirus called EMCV and SARS-CoV-2—exposing it to either UVA radiation or with light from a cool white light fluorescent lamp.
They found that the film is effective at killing all of the viruses—even in a room lit with just white fluorescent tubes.
The research, which has been published in the Journal of Photochemistry and Photobiology B: Biology, was carried out by Professor Andrew Mills, Dr. Ri Han and Dr. Christopher O’Rourke in the School of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering at Queen’s University Belfast and Dr. Connor Bamford and Dr. Jonathon D. Coey at the Wellcome-Wolfson Institute for Experimental Medicine in the School of Medicine, Dentistry and Biomedical Sciences at Queen’s.
Professor Andrew Mills comments, “This film could replace many of the disposable plastic films used in the healthcare industry as it has the added value of being self-sterilizing at no real extra cost. Through rigorous testing we have found that it is effective at killing viruses with just room light—this is the first time that anything like this has been developed and we hope that it will be a huge benefit to society.”
Dr. Connor Bamford says, “Pathogenic viruses like SARS-CoV-2 and influenza will continue to be global problem for years to come. In developing self-sterilizing thin plastic films, we have created a low-cost technology that could have a significant impact on the transmission of such concerning viruses in a healthcare environment and other sectors where they are used.”
EPSRC Director for Cross Council Programs, Dr. Kedar Pandya, says, “This is a hugely exciting development which has the potential to dramatically reduce the transmission of viruses across a wide range of settings while being environmentally sustainable.
“It is an excellent example of adventurous, innovative research which has the potential to improve the lives of millions of people.”
Daegu Gyeongbuk Institute of Science & Technology (DGIST, President Yang Kook) Professor Hongsoo Choi’s team of the Department of Robotics and Mechatronics Engineering collaborated with Professor Sung-Won Kim’s team at Seoul St. Mary’s Hospital, [...]
Tiny nets woven from DNA strands can ensnare the spike protein of the virus that causes COVID-19, lighting up the virus for a fast-yet-sensitive diagnostic test—and also impeding the virus from infecting cells, opening [...]
Roughly two decades ago, a strategy called optogenetics emerged to control brain activity with lasers. It uses viruses to insert genes into cells that make them sensitive to light. Optogenetics has revolutionized neuroscience by giving researchers [...]
Shigella bacteria, which causes Shigellosis, is the primary cause of bacterial diarrhea and diarrheal death among juveniles under five years of age. Because of the antibiotic resistance of Shigella strains, no commercial vaccines are available to date. [...]
Scientists have built microscopic robots equipped with electronic “brains” that are capable of walking autonomously. A team from Cornell University in the US developed the solar-powered bots as part of research into a new generation of [...]
Blood samples from patients with long COVID who are still suffering from fatigue and shortness of breath after a year show signs of autoimmune disease, according to a study published today (Thursday) [...]
High-grade serous ovarian cancer (HGSOC) is among the deadliest human cancers and its prognosis remains extremely poor. An article published in Advanced Science explored the self-therapeutic properties of gold nanoparticles to identify a molecular axis that [...]
Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) have a broad spectrum of antimicrobial activity and lyse microbial cells by interaction with biomembranes, offering great potential in designing new therapeutics. The antimicrobial resistance (AMR) caused due to overuse of [...]
Tumor cells are notoriously good at evading the human immune system; they put up physical walls, wear disguises and handcuff the immune system with molecular tricks. Now, UC San Francisco researchers have developed a [...]
Hyperspectral microscopy is an advanced visualization technique that combines hyperspectral imaging with state-of-the-art optics and computer software to enable rapid identification of nanomaterials. Since hyperspectral datacubes are large, their acquisition is complicated and time-consuming. [...]
Malignant brain tumors are cancerous growth in the brain with the possibility of spreading to other parts of the central nervous system (CNS). Brain tumors are highly invasive and have devastating consequences, poor prognosis, [...]
An ultrathin invention could make future computing, sensing and encryption technologies remarkably smaller and more powerful by helping scientists control a strange but useful phenomenon of quantum mechanics, according to new research recently published [...]
Methacrylate-based materials are often used in bone cement and dental resins. However, they have high failure rates as they undergo damage within ten years, impacting the quality of patient’s life and increasing healthcare costs. [...]
Early diagnosis of an infectious viral disease can help the patients and health care professionals monitor the outbreaks accurately and provide treatment at the early stage of a disease, avoiding any detrimental consequences. The [...]
Researchers at Duke University have developed a unique type of nanoparticle called a “nanorattle” that greatly enhances light emitted from within its outer shell. Loaded with light scattering dyes called Raman reporters commonly used [...]
A household microwave oven modified by a Cornell Engineering professor is helping to cook up the next generation of cellphones, computers and other electronics after the invention was shown to overcome a major challenge [...]