Although few people even know that exist, antimicrobial materials are found in a growing number of products people come into contact with every day. Antimicrobial materials are extracted from either a single medicinal herb or combination of herb species. A popular herb used to create these materials is paeonia root. In many traditional herbal remedies the paeonia root is particularly important. It has been primarily used in tonics and astringents.
It has become a popular way to create antimicrobial materials because it is non-toxic and non-stimulating to the human body. As a biotechnological antimicrobial material, it has shown to offer ideal antibacterial, anti-fungal, anti-viral, and anti-oxidation properties.
As a natural sterilizer and disinfectant, paeonia root is ideal for personal care products such as toothpaste, mouthwash, cosmetics and disinfectants. It offers a simple, non-toxic way to add disinfecting properties to consumer goods which are applied to the skin or consumed. Paeonia root has also shown to be a great disinfectant when used to prevent foot-and-mouth disease and bird flu.
As an anti-bacterial solution, it has been shown to nullify Escherichia coli, Staphylococcus aureu, Salmonella typhimurium, and Listeria. As an anti-mold / anti-fungal solution it can diminish Aspergillus niger, Penicillium citrinum, Trichophyton rubrum, Candida, and P. acne.
With all of these properties, it is no surprise that antimicrobial materials are now used in goods which are in constant contact with multiple individuals. For example, bedding in hotels, hospitals, and boarding houses typically include these materials. With so many people coming into contact with bedding in public sleeping areas, the need for antimicrobial materials is significant. The same materials can also be found embedded in special bedding for military members. It is even in aircraft seats.
Along with natural antimicrobial materials, there are a growing number of synthetic alternatives as well. Synthetic versions begin with a master batch. The master batch acts as a base which can then be altered with additives, coating materials, and biomaterials. There are a large number of antimicrobial polymers in the marketplace. Initially, these materials begin as pellets and they are then supplied in various formats such as PE, PLA, SAN, PP, ABS, and Polyester. This ensures the materials can meet the user's demands. Synthetic versions are found in utensils, electronic appliances, infant clothing / toys, and much more. They can even be used in food packaging materials. (Endocrine disrupter free)
When used as additives synthetic materials can be added directly to products like Personal care goods. On the other hand, coating materials can be directly applied to larger products such as flooring, textiles, mats, and car seats. This allows for a sanitary finish on large products without altering the appearance.
As this branch of technology continues to advance there is no telling what new applications of antimicrobial materials will be discovered. The big question industry experts are asking is wherever synthetic solutions will be able to completely replace natural products. Synthetic solutions offer greater control over the final mixture which means more control over potency. It is also typically less expensive to produce. At the same time, there seems to also be a market for natural products.