Natural Biodetergent Could Disinfect Air Conditioning Coils in Hospital Settings

Air conditioning systems represent one important source of microbial pollutants for indoor air. In the past few years, numerous strategies have been conceived to reduce the contamination of air conditioners, mainly in hospital settings. The biocidal detergent BATT2 represents a natural product obtained through extraction from brown seaweeds, that has been tested previously on multidrug-resistant microorganisms. BATT2 has been utilized for the disinfection of fan coil units from four air conditioning systems located in hospital environments with a mean degree of risk.

Liguori, et al. (2010) report in the latest issue of Annals of Clinical Microbiology and Antimicrobials on their study of samples collected from the air supplied by the conditioning systems and from the surfaces of fan coil units, before and after sanitization procedures. Total microbial counts at 37 degrees C and 22 degrees C and mycotic count at 32 degrees C were evaluated. Staphylococci and Pseudomonas aeruginosa were also detected on surfaces samples.

The researchers report that the biodetergent was able to reduce up 50 percent of the microbial pollution of fan coil unit surfaces and air supplied by the air conditioners. They conclude that BATT2 could be considered for cleaning/disinfection of air conditioning systems that should be performed on the basis of accurate and verifiable sanitization protocols.

Reference: Liguori G, Bagattini M, Galle F, Negrone M, Di Onofrio V and Triassi M. Automated cleaning of fan coil units with a natural detergent-disinfectant product. Annals of Clinical Microbiology and Antimicrobials 2010, 9:29doi:10.1186/1476-0711-9-29