23rd November 2004

 

RUGS WITHOUT BUGS

 

Students and staff at the University of Lincoln have helped develop a new type of pet bedding and horse rug, which kills unwanted bugs.

 

Veterinary microbiology research at the university’s Riseholme Park campus, which is led by senior lecturer Frank Ruedisueli, is focused on investigating novel anti-microbial compounds.

 

During the tests carried out by staff and students, anti-fungal and anti-bacterial fibres that were incorporated into textiles were tested against pathogenic skin microbes, including ringworm, Malassezia and Staphylococcus.

 

The research was sponsored by manufacturers Equimed UK, who have used it to produce a series of new products for animals.

 

Following successful inhibition of these organisms, fibres were then incorporated into pet bedding, horse rugs and travel bandages to prevent contamination of such materials by the pathogens.

 

The result was a product range that aims to help prevent skin infections caused by these pathogens, including the super bug MRSA. A recent article in the Mail on Sunday warned that the bug, which kills around 5,000 NHS patients every year, could become widespread in veterinary clinics.

 

“I am always thrilled to see research results make it to practical applications, even more so when it allows students to participate in applied research, something which we consider to be a vital element in our courses,” said Mr Ruedisueli.

 

Equimed spokesman Roland Cox added: “We are keen to see these products make a difference and look forward to more research collaboration with the University of Lincoln.”

 

 

For more information contact:

Matt Cross, Assistant Press Officer

(01522) 886625                                   mcross@lincoln.ac.uk

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