Copper does kill germs
Scientists are actively demonstrating the intrinsic efficacy of copper alloy "touch surfaces" to destroy a wide range of microorganisms that threaten public health.
While you may think that antiseptic wipes or sprays are necessary to kill germs, there's actually a metal that kills germs on contact — no cleaning supplies necessary.
Believe it or not, the use of copper for health purposes dates all the way back to Ancient Egypt, and scientists today are still learning about the amazing benefits of copper. Here's what you need to know.
Copper has antimicrobial properties, meaning it can kill microorganisms like bacteria and viruses. However, the microorganism has to come in contact with the copper in order for it to be killed. This is referred to as "contact killing."
According to Edward Bilsky, Ph.D., Provost and Chief Academic Officer at Pacific Northwest University of Health Sciences, copper can kill germs in a few ways:
- It disrupts bacterial cell membranes — copper ions damage cell membranes or "envelopes" and can destroy the DNA or RNA of the microbe
- It generates oxidative stress on bacterial cells and creates hydrogen peroxide that can kill the cell
- It interferes with proteins that operate important functions that keep bacterial cells alive
The exact mechanism of how copper interferes with proteins in bacterial cells is not fully understood yet, but the current hypothesis is mis-metalation, thanks to the fact that copper is a stable metal.
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