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Combating the rising global threat of antimicrobial resistance with clay minerals: A study on two major hospital superbugs

Centeleghe, Isabella, Myles, Erin, Baillie, Les ORCID:, Berube, Kelly ORCID:, Jones, Timothy ORCID: and Blaxland, James 2018. Combating the rising global threat of antimicrobial resistance with clay minerals: A study on two major hospital superbugs. Presented at: Focused meeting 2018: Emerging zoonoses and AMR: A global threat, University of Surrey, 02-02 July 2018.

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The global increase in antimicrobial resistance is placing increasing pressure on healthcare systems today. Historically, clay minerals have been used to treat intestinal ailments and mild skin conditions. More recently, research has demonstrated that specific clays may possess antimicrobial properties. With this in mind, we have focused on a new method to treat Clostridium difficile (C. difficile), the leading cause of infectious diarrhoea within hospitals, and Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), the number one cause of hospital skin infections worldwide. Using geochemical techniques, such as X-ray diffraction and Inductively-coupled plasma mass spectrometry, the physicochemistry of seven test clays was determined to assist in understanding the antimicrobial mechanism of the clay. To test the antimicrobial capability of the test clays, viability counts were used with hydrated clay minerals and both antibiotic-susceptible and antibiotic-resistant pathogenic bacteria to assess the feasibility of using clay minerals as therapeutic agents, ie. ‘nutraceuticals’. The ‘French green’ clay, composed of 91% quartz, demonstrated complete sterilisation of both bacteria following overnight incubation; supporting previous research with other pathogenic organisms. To establish the use of clays as geo-medical therapeutics, further pharmacotoxicology using in vitro human tissue models (i.e. gut and skin) will be employed to elucidate the mechanisms of clay bioreactivity. This study will help to further the understanding of antimicrobial clays, potentially leading to alternative therapies to decrease the current over prescription of antibiotics and the rising emergence of antimicrobial resistance.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Poster)
Status: Unpublished
Schools: Pharmacy
Earth and Environmental Sciences
Subjects: Q Science > QE Geology
Q Science > QR Microbiology
Last Modified: 22 Sep 2023 06:30

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