Hospital light fixture that kills bacteria to become commercially available

The Indigo-Clean light fixture from Kenall Manufacturing (Kenosha, WI) uses Continuous Environmental Disinfection technology to continuously kill harmful bacteria linked to hospital-acquired infections (HAIs). The technology behind Indigo-Clean inactivates a wide range of micro-organisms that are known causes of HAIs, including methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), C.difficile, and vancomycin-resistant Enterococcus (VRE).

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Indigo-Clean is a light fixture manufactured through an exclusive licensing agreement with the University of Strathclyde (Glasgow, Scotland), which developed, proved, and patented the technology. The light operates continuously and requires no operator, kills bacteria in the air and on all surfaces, and complies with all internationally recognized standards for patient safety. Indigo-Clean was unveiled just before the annual meeting of the Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology (APIC; Nashville, TN) held June 27-29, 2015.

Indigo-Clean uses a narrow spectrum of visible indigo-colored light at an output of 405 nm. This high-intensity narrow spectrum (HINS) light is absorbed by molecules within bacteria, producing a chemical reaction that kills the bacteria from the inside as if common household bleach had been released within the bacterial cells. Because the light is visible, it is lethal to pathogens but is safe for use in the presence of patients and staff.

Microbial contamination on a contact agar plate with a 405 nm light source in the background
Microbial contamination on a contact agar plate with a 405 nm light source in the background.

Strathclyde's technology has been in use since 2008 at Glasgow Royal Infirmary, a large teaching hospital operated by National Health Service (NHS) Greater Glasgow and Clyde. It gained a U.S. patent on the technology in 2014 and recently granted Kenall licensing rights for the North American healthcare market.

Kenall is poised to start commercial production of the technology immediately. The company also provides a clinical partners program to assist hospitals in evaluating the performance and cost savings potential of this technology.

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