Methicillin-resistant staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) bacterial infections, usually acquired in hospitals, kill an estimated 50,000 people in Europe each year. A trans-European project team led by the University of Limerick, Ireland, received a three-year research grant to develop MRSA-resistant textiles for hospital gowns, bedding, curtains and pillow covers with antimicrobial properties instilled with nanotechnology. The MRSA-resistant textiles will be self-sterilizing, killing the bacteria whether a hospital’s sterilization procedures are stellar or sloppy.
The European Union’s Seventh Framework Research Programme will provide 5 million euro to support research on four problems plaguing hospital patients. Along with MRSA-resistant fabrics, the research team will develop plaque-resistant cardiovascular stents, urinary stents that reduce kidney stone formation and faster-healing bone implants.