Cold War antiseptic has potential in fight against drug-resistant germs and viruses

By | July 10, 2020

Widely used antiseptics with chlorinated aromatic structures including triclosan and triclocarban barely degrade and so persist in the environment for long significant periods, even decades. In contrast, Miramistin is 88–93% biodegradable

The study is published in the journal FEMS Microbiology Reviews.

Lead author Dr Ali Osmanov, awarded a scholarship to study fungal disease at Manchester, examined Miramistin in the lab for his dissertation project.

When in his native country, Ukraine, he discovered extensive clinical use of Miramistin, causing him to consider if it might be useful elsewhere.

He said: “Miramistin has been overlooked in the West and may have practical and environmental advantages.

“Today, antiseptics act as a ‘last frontier’ against antibiotic-resistant bacteria and viruses, and also have important role in infection control. Unfortunately, currently used antiseptics have some flaws.

“For example, bleach can exacerbate asthma, and many of the older antiseptics are not active against coronaviruses. We hope our paper will stimulate modern studies to evaluate Miramistin’s potential.

“Considering emerging antimicrobial resistance, the significant potential of miramistin justifies its re-evaluation for use in other geographical areas and conditions.”

‘The antiseptic Miramistin: a review of its comparative in vitro and clinical activity’ doi: 10.1093/femsre/fuaa012

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