SBIR Phase I: Rapid Self-Decontaminating Textiles

Award Information
National Science Foundation
Award Year:
Phase I
Agency Tracking Number:
Solicitation Year:
Solicitation Topic Code:
Solicitation Number:
Small Business Information
Warwick Mills Inc
301 Turnpike Road, New Ipswich, NH, 03071-0409
Hubzone Owned:
Minority Owned:
Woman Owned:
Principal Investigator:
Charles Howland
(603) 731-0350
Business Contact:
Charles Howland
(603) 731-0350
Research Institution:

This Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Phase I project proposes to develop advanced antiseptic textiles to be used in garments to prevent cross contamination of antibiotic-resistant pathogens. Drug-resistant pathogens Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), Vancomycin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (VRSA), and Clostridium difficile represent a significant public health problem. The goal of the project is to develop a textile system to provide active biocidal activity on both the outside and skin-side of the garment. Prevention of cross contamination requires 3-log pathogen kill in 30-90 seconds on a garment?s outside while destruction on the skin-side need not be so aggressive. While existing decontaminating textiles offer 3-log pathogen destruction, their kill times are slow, ranging from 1 hour to 24 hours. While these technologies are useful, they are not effective for cross-contamination control. Personnel from hospitals, transport security, police, and corrections move from one subject to the next in intervals on the order of 30-90 seconds. A novel textile coating system is proposed that can be used in garments to provide these high rates of quick antiseptic performance in less than 90 seconds. The broader impact/commercial potential of this project is to produce rapid self-decontaminating garments to be used by personnel in law enforcement, corrections, TSA transport screening, hospitals and long-term care facilities. In February 10, 2010, Reuters reported that the estimated cost of infections acquired at hospitals alone is $8.1 billion based on a study published in the Archives of Internal Medicine. An initial commercial launch would focus on glove solutions that address hand-hygiene concerns. Gloves would be followed by other garments that require self-decontaminating textiles. Uniforms, lab coats, masks and coveralls offer significant commercial opportunities. Total potential US early adopter headcount is estimated at 900,000 users. The societal impact of this innovation would be to make a significant contribution to infectious disease control, and help prevent transmission of MRSA, VRSA and C. difficile. Not all surfaces can be easily decontaminated, and a successful completion of this SBIR effort would enhance the current scientific and technological understanding of methods to kill drug-resistant pathogens.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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