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IIT Delhi incubated start-up Medicfibers makes antimicrobial solution

08 Jul '22
3 min read
Pic: IIT Delhi
Pic: IIT Delhi

Medicfibers, an IIT Delhi incubated start-up, and AIIMS New Delhi, have developed an antimicrobial solution, Viroclog, that when applied as a coating on textiles, provides long-lasting protection against HAI by reducing virus, bacteria, fungi survival on fabric. The tests were performed at AIIMS New Delhi, IIT Delhi, IISc Bangalore, and NABL accredited labs. 

Coating the Viroclog on textiles lowers the surface energy preventing adhesion of microbes and destroys the membrane integrity of microbes. Destruction of lipid-based membrane barrier makes the microbes inactive, thus preventing infection transmission, IIT Delhi said in a press release.

The basic significance of this technology is to save lives and reduce healthcare associated costs by integrating antimicrobial technology with hospital clothing that provides a layer of protection against microbial pathogens. The tests show that Viroclog technology contributes significantly towards reducing infections through antimicrobial hospital clothing.

Viroclog comes with some unique features. It includes providing antimicrobial efficacy up to 99.9 per cent against viruses, bacteria, and fungus and long- lasting antimicrobial properties for more than 100 washes. The products treated with Viroclog are Oeko-Tex-suited and REACH compliant, indicating that they are safe and human skin friendly

“The existing market players primarily rely on Ag-coated nanoparticles, while Viroclog is significantly different, possessing broad-spectrum antimicrobial properties. Secondly, while currently available solutions offer coating protection up to ~50 washes, the patented Viroclog solution in multiple laboratory testings could provide protection lasting more than 100 washes demonstrating a high durability. Viroclog solution reduces infections,” Harsh Lal, founder, Medicfibers, said.

“Clothing materials provide room for the growth of pathogenic bacteria as they are porous, which only increases further in the humid and warm environment of the Indian subcontinent. Further, HAIs lead to prolonged hospitalisation, added financial burden, and often more mortality. Therefore, there is a strong rationale for developing technology in India to reduce the HAI burden through a range of antimicrobial hospital clothing for healthcare,” Sachin Kumar, mentor to the start-up and a faculty member at the Centre of Biomedical Engineering, IIT Delhi, said.

“Hospital-acquired microbial infections are a major problem not only in India but globally. During the COVID-19 pandemic, there is a renewed sense of urgency in tackling this issue. In this context, it is now being realised that clothing and textile materials are not only carriers of microorganisms such as pathogenic bacteria, viruses, and fungi, but also can act as a breeding ground for the growth of these microbes. Therefore, there is an urgent unmet need for medical workers in hospital settings to have protective clothing that provides long-lasting protection against microbes while being economical and comfortable. Medicfibers have performed significant work in this direction to provide affordable clothing solutions,” Vikram Saini, medical advisor to the start-up and a faculty member at AIIMS New Delhi, said.

Fibre2Fashion News Desk (GK)

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