Smart Polymer Technology at Work
Illustrated for medical applications. Several other formulations 
such as a one-part system are available.

A 3-D polymeric network is immobilized onto the substrate surface.
The immobilized surface network is impregnated with small (sub-micron) particles of silver halide that result in the formation of silver halide/polymer complex.
Solubility characteristics of the silver halide/polymeric complex prevent ionic silver from leaching into solutions contacting the surface coating.
Silver is available, however, to react with bacterial cells contacting the coating.
Silver is preferentially transferred directly to the microorganism causing a toxic accumulation that results in cell death.
Silver accumulated within dead microorganisms is not toxic to neighboring cells because it remains effectively complexed by the proteins of the dead microorganism. The silver halide reservoir within the polymeric network replenishes the coating surface with silver, allowing the coating to maintain high surface anti microbial activity to microorganisms that contact it for further challenges.

 Why silver?


Silver is a powerful antimicrobial metal and has extraordinarily low human toxicity. Silver salts, silver complexes and silver metal have played an important part in the development of medicine. Despite the fact that silver ions possess antimicrobial efficacy equal to or greater than other heavy metals ions, they have almost no toxic effects on mammals. Interest in the use of silver is being pursued in a wide variety of biomedical applications. Silver has a broad spectrum of activity (bacteria, yeast and fungi) greater than most modern antibiotics. Prior to the widespread introduction of antibiotics in the 1950's, a large number of silver-based treatments were available, some of which are still in use. Present antimicrobial use of silver includes anti-infective coatings in medical devices such as catheters, burn ointments and water purification.

The Surfacine delivery system is so efficient that the silver from a single silver dollar can be used to make over 1,000 cans of Surfacine disinfectant.