Saturday, 15 November 2014
Friday, 14 November 2014
BAREILLY: Cow protection activists across the country and abroad have an unexpected supporter in the form of Sunni cleric from the house of Barelvis, Maulana Tauqeer Raza. He has called for closure of meat factories and threatened to go on a fast-unto-death at Jantar Mantar in New Delhi if this is not done.
Terming the meat factories as the biggest killers of cows in the country, the Maulana told TOI, "Islam states that the milk of a cow is like 'amrit' (nector) but it's meat is 'zeher' (poison) but look the factories exporting meat. They are not even sparing the Neelgai (blue bull) which is being captured from forests and slaughtered at these meat factories. Even the calves are not spared by unscrupulous meat exporters who do not care that in their bid to meet the target of exporting meat, they are destroying the future generation of this animal."
Pressing for closure of meat factories, Tauqeer Raza said he feels stopping the slaughtering of cows would reduce price of milk by half and "preserve our cattle wealth which is vanishing fast with the mushrooming of meat exporting units feeding the markets of countries like Pakistan, Bangladesh and China".
He said it is a wrong notion that Muslims in India consume cow meat because it is prohibited by Shariat, which explicitly states that it should not be consumed as it is full of diseases. "But for filling the coffers of a handful of people, day is not far when cow milk would become history and we will be telling our future generations as to how milk tasted like."
When asked what made him take up the issue of cow slaughter, the cleric said, "This region (Bareilly -Rohilkhand) has become notorious as red meat corridor of the country with almost daily seizures of cattle for illegal slaughtering in the meat factories at Rampur, Moradabad, Sambhal, Bijnore and Meerut. Initially, I thought that the matter should be raised by some Hindu organization to which I would lend my support.
"But then I realized, that there is a general perception that Muslims are the ones who slaughter and consume meat which I wanted to remove from the minds of people who are, perhaps, oblivious to the fact that a majority of meat producing and exporting factories in India are owned by Hindus. Among them, many of the community which doesn't even consume onion and garlic and are strict vegetarians," he claimed.
However Tauqeer Raza accepted that maximum number of such factories are located in Uttar Pradesh owing to state government's policy of granting indiscriminate licences. The jails of UP are full of people who are referred to as pashu taskar (cattle smugglers) whereas the fact remains that they are acting as conduits of factory owners who exceed their daily quota of animal for slaughtering from 500 a day to somewhere around 2,600.
In this connection, the cleric said he would hand over a memorandum addressed to the CM and PM on Thursday and if action is not taken, he will sit on an indefinite fast at Jantar Mantar.
Welcoming the decision, regional convenor, People for Animals (PFA), Dheeraj Yadav said, "It will be immensely beneficial for those waging the campaign against cow slaughter and will send a strong message among the masses that the cow is venerated by both Hindu and Muslims alike."
New Delhi: From musty establishments in the dusty lanes of Kolkata's Burra Bazaar to towering office blocks in the financial nerve center of the country, Mumbai, the Marwari community plays a crucial role in turning the wheels of the country's economy as innovators, entrepreneurs and business leaders.
Their extraordinary success forms the primary subject for Thomas A Timberg in his book 'The Marwaris: From Jagat Seth to the Birlas'.
Speaking at a recent panel discussion here with author Gurcharan Das, Mr Timberg attempted to answer the fundamental question that cropped up: What makes the Marwaris so successful as a business community?
"One of the reasons they are so successful, I think, is because of their ability to adapt to situations. A flexibility of mind is surely an important trait responsible for their extraordinary success" he said.
"The answer also probably lies in the fact the commercial communities in general, and Marwaris in particular, have successfully implemented attitudes, skills and support systems," he added.
Elaborating further, Gurcharan Das enumerated a few characteristic traits which he attributed to the community.
"Their entrepreneurial instinct, credibility as businessmen and their community spirit are big factors in their success," he said.
He also highlighted their risk-taking ability.
"The business world rewards those who take risks. The incredible achievements of the Marwaris have often been credited to their extraordinary risk-taking ability."
Mr Das discussed the pitfalls of the socialist era and how that led to stagnation in the growth of the market and saw a downturn in the fortunes of business communities as a whole.
"Competition is the school in which companies learn to perfect their skills. By closing the economy and discouraging competition, socialism made Indian business houses complacent and insensitive to customer needs. They lost the incentive to improve their products and acquire marketing skills."
In his book, Mr Timberg chronicles the journey of a community that, from the desert sands of Rajasthan, slowly spread out to all the corners of the country, and eventually achieved phenomenal success in their trade.
Touching on this aspect, Mr Das writes in his foreword to the book, "With their enormous appetite for risk, the Marwaris controlled much of India's inland trade by the end of the First World War. Gradually they turned to industry after the war, and by 1970 they controlled much of the nation's private industrial assets, and by 2011 the Marwaris accounted for a quarter of the Indians on the Forbes list of billionaires."
The book is part of a series edited by Gurcharan Das about Indian businesses. The previous books include 'Arthashastra', 'East India Company' and 'Money in Ancient India' among others.
Thursday, 4 September 2014
Wednesday, 13 August 2014
Guruvayur: Revered by devotees of Lord Krishna, cows and bulls past their prime are being looked after at an 'old age home' by a temple in Guruvayur.
"It is a very old practice among devotees to offer cows and bulls for fullfilment of their vows to Lord Krishna, considering 'his association' with them," T V Chandramohan, Chairman of Guruvayur Devaswom Management Committee (GDMC), which manage the temples, said.
He said most cows and bulls were donated years back and are very old now and not producing milk. As religion prohibits slaughter of cows and bulls, it is the temple management's duty to take care of them till their death.
So the animals were shifted to the old age home for bovines at Vengad, he said.
The management has earmarked Rs. 72 lakh for renovation, improvement and repairs of the home in Malappuram district.
The running expenses annually comes to around 2.5 crore, Chandramohan said.
There are a total of 1,055 cows and bulls, devoted to the presiding deity by worshippers over a period of time, now shifted to the "Gokulam" (cowshed) at Vengad, about 60 km from Guruvayur, spread over 96 acres, Chief Veterinarian of the cowshed Dr V Suma said.
The aim was to use the facility as a "care station" for aged and unwell cows without any emphasis on milk production, which is only about 40 litres per day, as they were at the fag end of their lactation period, she said.
Though there may be several takers for the aged animals, especially from butchers and meat exporters, the management does not want to sell them, considering the "religious ethics as it will be equivalent to defeating the objective of devotees who offered the cows to Lord Krishna", she said.
"The proposal is to set up a most modern old age home for the animals", she said.
Besides Vengad, there are two cowsheds under GDMC - one at Guruvayur and another at nearby Kaaveed - where a total of 45 milch-cows are being grown, Suma said.
On an average 13 cows die per month at Vengad, mainly due to age-related diseases. Milch cows at Kaaveed and Guruvayur would be shifted to Vengad once they become old or unwell.
The 'old age home' is perhaps the first of its kind in the world as aged cows and bulls are sent to slaughter houses in other parts of the world, according to doctors of Kerala Veterinary and Animal Sciences University.
Devaswom Executive Engineer K Sumathi said that as part of renovation, more paddocks would be set up. Though there were iron fences around the paddocks, dogs and foxes entered there through fence holes and attacked the animals, she said.
"Staff of the Gokulam are afraid of walking alone in the paddocks as dogs in groups of 12 and 13 encroached the paddocks", Suma said.
Burial of carcasses of bovines also pose a problem now following protests from people in nearby areas, who complain of environmental and atmospheric pollution.
An electrical incinerator was installed, but necessary equipment was not fitted with it and there is no power connection as yet and hence even its trial run was not conducted, Suma said.
Cow-dung pits and flurry pits would also be modernised and improved so that the animals do not slip into them accidentally. Hygienic conditions and the sanitary facilities would also be improved as part of the renovation.
The Gokulam at Vengad was inaugurated in 1984 by the then Chief Minister of Kerala late K Karunakaran, who was an ardent devotee of Lord Krishna.
Sunday, 15 June 2014
Wednesday, 11 June 2014
Dutch give nod to 'guru currency'
The Global Country of World Peace, set up by the Indian mystic, issued the brightly coloured notes of one, five and 10 "raam" last October.
Since then, more than 100 Dutch shops, some of them part of big department store chains, in 30 villages and cities have accepted the notes.
A spokesman for the Dutch Central Bank told BBC News Online the bank was keeping a close eye on the raam, although he added that the Maharishi movement had done everything according to the law.
"The raam can be used as long as the notes are not used as legal tender and it stays within a closed-off circuit of users," he said.
The raam is also circulating as the currency of Maharishi Vedic City in the US state of Iowa together with the US dollar, while raam-based bonds are being offered in 35 American states.
Benjamin Feldman, 'Minister of Finance' of the Maharishi movement, told BBC News Online the raam could be used to battle poverty and create world peace.
He said governments could use the raam to start up agricultural and other development projects around the world.
"There are 1.5 billion people living in extreme poverty and currencies like the US dollar are not available to most of them. The raam can be used to build new houses, roads, schools and health clinics," Mr Feldman said.
And after a few good crop seasons, and with export of produce, the raam could then be exchanged for any other, hard, currency or even taken out of circulation, Mr Feldman argued.
He added the raam was introduced in a relatively rich nation like the Netherlands, "because developing countries can use that as an inspiration."
The movement plans a roll-out of the currency "in the European Union and in all continents".
Opticians take the raam
In the Netherlands, the raam notes are accepted in Dutch shops at a fixed rate of 10 euros per raam.
"There are now about 100,000 raam notes in circulation. That is not a lot but we are keeping a close eye on it because it must never lead to confusion for the public," the Dutch central bank spokesman said.
Pearle Opticians in the southern Dutch town of Roermond started accepting the raam notes three weeks ago.
"We have a lot of clients in the movement and we did it as a service to them. But so far, only one person has actually paid with it," a Pearle shop manager said.
Shopkeepers can exchange their raam notes at the Fortis Bank branch in Roermond.
Mr Maharishi introduced his "transcendental meditation" methods to the West more than 40 years ago.
Since then, he has built up a following of about six million people.
His most famous followers were the Beatles, who travelled to India in 1968 to meditate with him.
Thursday, 29 May 2014
Use of Copper and Brass - Way to Good health
Our ancestors used to have good health throughout their life; one of the various reasons was daily use of Copper and Brass utensils. It has been proved that Copper and Brass (Brass = 60% Copper+ 40% Zinc) carries lots of medicinal properties, which are tremendously beneficial for human health. According to this the medicinal properties of Copper and zinc, gets leached into water stored in them and this stored water we call 'Tamra-Jal'. Human body gets benefits of these medicinal properties by drinking 'Tamra-Jal' or cooking food in 'Tamra-Jal'.
Today, to ensure good health how much effort one takes? As a precaution we drink only pure water either boiled or purified with expensive electric purifiers. Instead of all this, one should drink only ‘Tamra-Jal’, which is pure and medicated too!
Deficiency of Copper causes severe health problems such as :
· Loss of resistance power to diseases,
· Severe anemia,
· Skin diseases,
· Abnormalities in bones and weakness of bones which eventually leads to frequent fracturing.
Deficiency of Zinc causes:
· Slow and improper growth in kids,
· Hamper resistance power to diseases,
· Skin diseases,
· Loss of appetite,
· Loss of wound healing capacity.
Benefits of Copper:
· Helps healthy growth,
· Regulates blood flow, useful in heart problems,
· Helps to loose extra fat,
· Gives luster to skin.
· Useful in preventing Anaemia, Amoebiasis, Cough, Acidity, Piles etc.
The influence of copper upon human health is due to the fact that it is part of enzymes, which are proteins that help biochemical reactions occur in every cell. Copper is involved in the absorption, storage and metabolism of iron.
Benefits of Zinc :
40% Zinc from the Brass helps human body as:
· Improves resistance power to diseases,
· Improves skin tone and cures skin problems,
· Nourishes healthy hair.
Copper - The most economical and natural water purifier :-
Impure water gives rise to different diseases such as dysentery, cholera, jaundice and typhoid and sometimes they can cost you life. Along with above said properties, copper also has significant antibacterial property. Pitambari'sown R&D department successfully proved that all bacteria even the stubborn one like E-coli gets killed if the water is stored in a Copper vessel just for 2 ½ hours, purifying water to make it ideal for drinking. Copper bottom kitchenware consumes 40% less L.P.G. for cooking than other kitchenware.
The atmospheric reaction forms a greenish black layer on the surface of Copper and Brass metal. So, cleaning these utensils was quite difficult. Cleaning Copper-Brass with traditional items like lemon, buttermilk, tamarind and ash
Mystery of copper & brass – Ayurvedic secrecy to health
Scientists had thoroughly studied many of the ayurvedic granthas, to know more about the medicinal benefits of copper and brass. In the 5 th chapter and 46 th verse, of famous grantha ‘Rasratnasamucchaya’, we find significant information on medicinal properties and its benefits to humans. When water is stored in the copper / brass vessels, copper and brass (brass = 70% copper + 30% zinc) gets leached in the water. Drinking this water benefits human body with their medicinal properties.
After knowing the importance of copper and zinc, now a days, people have started using the copper and brass utensils for storing drinking water, in big restaurants it is used for serving. You can find decorative copper jugs in many houses too. Along with copper, zinc is also required for many biological activities, which we get from brass vessels.
WHY COPPER IS PRECIOUS :-
Copper is antibacterial / germicidal, via the oligodynamic effect. For example, brass doorknobs disinfect themselves of many bacteria within a period of eight hours.Antimicrobial properties of copper are effective against MRSA, Escherichia coli and other pathogens. At colder temperatures, longer times
are required to kill bacteria. Copper has the intrinsic ability to kill a variety of potentially harmful pathogens. Several of the aforementioned bacteria are responsible for a large portion of the nearly two million hospital-acquired infections contracted each year in the United States. Frequently touched surfaces in hospitals and public facilities harbor bacteria and increase the risk for contracting infections. Covering touch surfaces with copper alloys can help reduce microbial contamination associated with hospital-acquired infections on these surfaces.
WHAT DID OUR RISHIES SAINTS SAY ABOUT COPPER :-
Our Rishies Saints have enlighted a most easy formula by their experience. Only remady to remove the new & old serious diseases, that the water should be kept in the copper utensil in the night. In the morning drink 4 Glasses (1.25 liters) of water without washing mouth before sunrise. After drinking water, you can wash your mouth & brush your teeth (Manzan). But do not drink tea for 45 minutes. today in every hour, about 91 persons are dying due to ;heart problems. About 107 population of India have this disease. Scientists assume that in the fear of 2010 in entire world the highest patients of the world will be in India.
The patient and disease persons who cannot drink 4 Glasses of water at a time in the beginning, can start by drinking one or two Glasses of water in the starting and gradually come to 4 Glasses of water. There is no disease in the world which can not be removed by this use. It is useful to drink the water in the morning before sunrise for all patient or healthy persons. This results comes by experiences and experiments. We request all the brothers & sisters to propogate this `Morning water use' compain and be helpful to remove the disease of patients. Water and only water is Life. By drinking water of pure copper, utensil is useful in following old & new diseases. Diabities, Headache, Anemia, Paralysis, Fatness, T.B., Lever disease, All eye disease, Stomach disease, Mental weakness, Cough & gastric problems, Monthly ladies problem, urine disease, (Stone) etc. Old age weakness, Blood pressure, joint pains, Heart disease, Bronchities, Monozities, Utris, cancer, Lucuria, Pimples, Acidity, Piles etc.
COPPER WATER BENEFICIAL FOR HEART PATIENTS:-
In 21st century, science got a great progress. In the field of Tantra-Gyan, the world has passed a very field of Tantra-Gyan, the world has passed a very long distance. In the world of health many newly methods and instruments are being developed but it is also a bitter truth that health services are being damn costly day by day.
Today in every hour, about 91 persons are dying due to heart problems. About 10:7 population of India have this disease. Scientists assume that in the fear of 2010 in entire world the highest patients of the world will be in India.
Most of people do not know that copper works to remove roots disease like latrine-barricade and blood-barricade etc. Copper water plays an important role to remove these barricades. If anybody takes copper water regularly, his/her heart will not get pressure. In the heart problems and breath-problems, Copper-Bashan controls beeping of heart and speed of breath. Fat creates many diseases. Much weight is the main cause jof heart problems.
Copper-ash controls weight. If physical-fire goes on, human being could not get any disease. If we use Copper water, Copper-jewellery and copper pots, we can not face any problem all of these are beneficial for heart patients.
In ancient time most of people used copper mostly so they did not face any problems such heart problems, diabetes, blood pressure and sleeplessness. But in present time most of us take medicines to control such type’s problems. Due to ;take drugs their body get other evil results. In the Ayurved, it is called poison to remove it, we use copper. Many and Vaidhya are using copper water, copper ashes and copper pots to their patients and they get good result. If we keep copper water and take it iln early morning, we get a great benefit. Due to these reasons in ancient time most of people used copper.
You can get healthy body easily using copper utensils. So if you want to be healthful, just start to use copper utensils and have copper water.
How to clean Copper utensils:
Vinegar and Salt
Pour one pint of vinegar into a spray bottle with three tablespoons of table salt. Spray this on the copper item and allow it to set for 30 minutes. Then with a soft cloth simply rub it clean. Buff the item to a shine with a soft cloth.
Cream of Tartar and lemon juice
This works well on areas that are difficult to clean. Make a paste of cream of tartar and lemon juice. Allow the paste to remain on the item for 10 to 15 minutes and then rinse thoroughly. Use a soft cloth to buff to a shine. To clean copper pots: Rub lemon slices dipped in table salt on the bottom of pots and pans. This works very well for removing the tarnished or burn markings the pans may have.
Lemon Juice & Baking Soda
Make a paste of lemon juice and table salt. Use a soft cloth to apply the paste to the copper item. Allow the paste to remain on the item for 30 minutes. Rinse with warm water and dry with a soft cloth. You can also use a lemon slice sprinkled with baking soda. Rub the copper item with the lemon slice and then rinse well with warm water and dry.
To Maintain Shine
Polish the item after cleaning with beeswax. Apply the beeswax with a soft cloth and remove it with a clean cloth and buff to a shine. To help keep the appearance of copper items looking nice with your non-lacquered pieces, you can apply two coats of a transparent metal lacquer to prevent tarnishing and also to make cleaning the item easier.
Wash tarnished copper utensils with soap and water. Then polish with a mixture of equal parts of salt, vinegar, and flour. After rubbing the item with this mixture, wash and rinse it thoroughly. Use a clean soft cloth to buff to a shine. Ketchup: This works great on tarnished copper pieces. Simply wipe the ketchup on with a soft cloth. Allow it to remain for 10 to 15 minutes and then rinse well with warm water. Use a soft cloth to buff to a shine. Use a soft small brush, such as a toothbrush to clean hard to reach areas such as handles. Apply the ketchup to the tooth brush and clean the area. Leave the ketchup on for 10 to 15 minutes and then rise thoroughly. Use a soft cloth to buff to a shine.
What Is Metal Charged Water
When metals like gold, silver or copper are put in water for a specific time period, the resultant water gets charged with the health benefitting qualities of the metal.
Some Health Benefits Of Metal Charged Water
Some of these health benefits are :
Gold benefits the brain, relaxes the body and mind. Cleopatra used it for its benefits to health and beauty. It is also used in China as medicine.
Silver has anti bacterial, anti viral and anti fungal properties. In olden times milk was preserved by putting silver coins in it since it kills pathogens of all types instantly.
Copper is needed by the body for various physiological functions like RBC synthesis, protein metabolism, enzyme activity and benefits the nervous and circulatory systems and bone health.
Things Required & Precautions
Gold: 10 to 20 grams of gold coins or gold ornaments like bangles, rings, etc.
Precautions: Ornaments without stones or a lot of joints, like chains or necklaces should not be used for this purpose.
Silver:20 to 50 grams of pure silver coins, utensils like small plates or pieces of silver.
Precautions: Use only pure silver for this purpose.
Copper:40 to 50 grams of copper in the form of coins, utensils, small plates or pieces of copper.
Precautions : Do not use copper wires meant for electric work
All these things can be got from jewellers who should be told that these things need to be pure and for what purpose they are being bought so that you do not end up buying the wrong thing.
Procedure For Making Metal Charged Water & Its Usage
- Wash the needed metal well with clean water.
- In a steel vessel (do not use aluminium vessel), put 4 to 5 cups of fresh & clean water. Drop all the metal in this water and keep the water for boiling. Keep boiling the water till 2 cups of water remain.
- Remove the metals from the water and strain this water through a fine muslin cloth.
- The resultant water is the metal charged water.
- Drink 1 cup of this slightly warm metal charged water in the morning and the other cup in the evening.
However it is better to prepare it fresh each time it is to be consumed. For this purpose take 3 cups of water each time and boil till just 1 cup remains. This can be consume after straining and cooling to the required temperature.
- If the disease is chronic boil further till 1/2 cup water remains. This will be more beneficial.
- Do not drink stale water that is water remaining from the previous day. Fresh metal charged water should be made each day preferably each time. also use pure metals.
- It is not necessary to use all the 3 metals together for making the metal charged water. One can use the metal indicated for the specific disease and make the water.
Do not consume sour things like pickles, lemons, limes and the like during the time you are consuming this water.
If this water is taken along with Acupressure therapy then chronic diseases get cured faster.
The link to my hub on Acupressure is given below.
Antimicrobial properties of copper
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Copper and its alloys (brasses, bronzes, cupronickel, copper-nickel-zinc, and others) are natural antimicrobial materials. Ancient civilizations exploited theantimicrobial properties of copper long before the concept of microbes became understood in the nineteenth century. In addition to several copper medicinal preparations, it was also observed centuries ago that water contained in copper vessels or transported in copper conveyance systems was of better quality (i.e., no or little visible slime formation) than water contained or transported in other materials.
The antimicrobial properties of copper are still under active investigation. Molecular mechanisms responsible for the antibacterial action of copper have been a subject of intensive research. Scientists are also actively demonstrating the intrinsic efficacies of copper alloy "touch surfaces" to destroy a wide range ofmicroorganisms that threaten public health.
· 1 Mechanisms of antibacterial action of copper
· 2 Antimicrobial efficacy of copper alloy touch surfaces
o 2.1 E. coli
§ 2.1.1 Efficacy on copper surfaces
§ 2.1.2 Efficacy on brass, bronze, copper-nickel alloys
§ 2.1.3 Efficacy on stainless steel
o 2.2 MRSA
o 2.3 Clostridium difficile
o 2.4 Influenza A
o 2.5 Adenovirus
o 2.6 Fungi
· 3 See also
· 4 References
Mechanisms of antibacterial action of copper
The oligodynamic effect was discovered in 1893 as a toxic effect of metal ions on living cells, algae, molds, spores, fungi, viruses, prokaryotic and eukaryoticmicroorganisms, even in relatively low concentrations. This antimicrobial effect is shown by ions of copper as well as mercury, silver, iron, lead, zinc, bismuth, gold, and aluminium.
In 1973, researchers at Battelle Columbus Laboratories conducted a comprehensive literature, technology and patent search that traced the history of understanding the “bacteriostatic and sanitizing properties of copper and copper alloy surfaces” which demonstrated that copper, in very small quantities, has the power to control a wide range of molds, fungi, algae and harmful microbes. Of the 312 citations mentioned in the review across the time period 1892–1973, the observations below are noteworthy:
· Copper inhibits Actinomucor elegans, Aspergillus niger, Bacterium linens, Bacillus megaterium, Bacillus subtilis, Brevibacterium erythrogenes, Candida utilis,Penicillium chrysogenum, Rhizopus niveus, Saccharomyces mandshuricus, and Saccharomyces cerevisiae in concentrations above 10 g/L.
· Torulopsis utilis is completely inhibited at 0.04 g/L copper concentrations.
· Tubercle bacillus is inhibited by copper as simple cations or complex anions in concentrations from 0.02 to 0.2 g/L.
· Achromobacter fischeri and Photobacterium phosphoreum growth is inhibited by metallic copper.
· Paramecium caudatum cell division is reduced by copper plates placed on Petri dish covers containing infusoria and nutrient media.
· Poliovirus is inactivated within 10 minutes of exposure to copper with ascorbic acid.
A subsequent paper  probed some of copper’s antimicrobial mechanisms and cited no fewer than 120 investigations into the efficacy of copper’s action on microbes. The authors noted that the antimicrobial mechanisms are very complex and take place in many ways, both inside cells and in the interstitial spaces between cells.
Examples of some of the molecular mechanisms noted by various researchers include the following:
· The 3-dimensional structure of proteins can be altered by copper, so that the proteins can no longer perform their normal functions. The result is inactivation of bacteria or viruses 
· Copper complexes form radicals that inactivate viruses.
· Copper may disrupt enzyme structures, and functions by binding to sulfur- or carboxylate-containing groups and amino groups of proteins.
· Copper may interfere with other essential elements, such as zinc and iron.
· Copper facilitates deleterious activity in superoxide radicals. Repeated redox reactions on site-specific macromolecules generate OH- radicals, thereby causing “multiple hit damage” at target sites.
· Copper can interact with lipids, causing their peroxidation and opening holes in the cell membranes, thereby compromising the integrity of cells. This can cause leakage of essential solutes, which in turn, can have a desiccating effect.
· Copper damages the respiratory chain in Escherichia coli cells. and is associated with impaired cellular metabolism.
· Faster corrosion correlates with faster inactivation of microorganisms. This may be due to increased availability of cupric ion, Cu2+, which is believed to be responsible for the antimicrobial action.
· In inactivation experiments on the flu strain, H1N1, which is nearly identical to the H5N1 avian strain and the 2009 H1N1 (swine flu) strain, researchers hypothesized that copper’s antimicrobial action probably attacks the overall structure of the virus and therefore has a broad-spectrum effect.
· Microbes require copper-containing enzymes to drive certain vital chemical reactions. Excess copper, however, can affect proteins and enzymes in microbes, thereby inhibiting their activities. Researchers believe that excess copper has the potential to disrupt cell function both inside cells and in the interstitial spaces between cells, probably acting on the cells’ outer envelope.
Currently, researchers believe that the most important antimicrobial mechanisms for copper are as follows:
· Elevated copper levels inside a cell causes oxidative stress and the generation of hydrogen peroxide. Under these conditions, copper participates in the so-called Fenton-type reaction — a chemical reaction causing oxidative damage to cells.
· Excess copper causes a decline in the membrane integrity of microbes, leading to leakage of specific essential cell nutrients, such as potassium and glutamate. This leads to desiccation and subsequent cell death.
· While copper is needed for many protein functions, in an excess situation (as on a copper alloy surface), copper binds to proteins that do not require copper for their function. This “inappropriate” binding leads to loss-of-function of the protein, and/or breakdown of the protein into nonfunctional portions.
These potential mechanisms, as well as others, are the subject of continuing study by academic research laboratories around the world.
Antimicrobial efficacy of copper alloy touch surfaces
Main article: Antimicrobial copper touch surfaces
Copper alloy surfaces have intrinsic properties to destroy a wide range of microorganisms. In the interest of protecting public health, especially in healthcare environments with their susceptible patient populations, an abundance of peer-reviewed antimicrobial efficacy studies have been conducted in the past 10 years regarding copper’s efficacy to destroy E. coli O157:H7, methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), Staphylococcus, Clostridium difficile, influenza A virus,adenovirus, and fungi. Stainless steel was also investigated since it is such an important surface material in today’s healthcare environments. The studies cited here, plus others directed by the United States Environmental Protection Agency, resulted in the 2008 registration of 274 different copper alloys as certified antimicrobial materials that have public health benefits.
Main article: Escherichia coli
E. coli O157:H7 is a potent, highly infectious, ACDP (Advisory Committee on Dangerous Pathogens, UK) Hazard Group 3 foodborne and waterborne pathogen. The bacterium produces potent toxins that cause diarrhea, severe aches and nausea in infected persons. Symptoms of severe infections include hemolytic colitis (bloody diarrhea), hemolytic uremic syndrome (kidney disease), and death. E. coli O157:H7 has become a serious public health threat because of its increased incidence and because children up to 14 years of age, the elderly, and immunocompromised individuals are at risk of incurring the most severe symptoms.
Efficacy on copper surfaces
Recent studies have shown that copper alloy surfaces kill E. coli O157:H7. Over 99.9% of E. coli microbes are killed after just 1–2 hours on copper. On stainless steel surfaces, the microbes can survive for weeks.
Results of E. coli O157:H7 destruction on an alloy containing 99.9% copper (C11000) demonstrate that this pathogen is rapidly and almost completely killed (over 99.9% kill rate) within ninety minutes at room temperature (20 °C). At chill temperatures (4 °C), over 99.9% of E. coli O157:H7 are killed within 270 minutes. E. coli O157:H7 destruction on several copper alloys containing 99%–100% copper (including C10200, C11000, C18080, and C19700) at room temperature begins within minutes. At chilled temperatures, the inactivation process takes about an hour longer. No significant reduction in the amount of viable E. coli O157:H7 occurs on stainless steel after 270 minutes.
Studies have been conducted to examine the E. coli O157:H7 bactericidal efficacies on 25 different copper alloys to identify those alloys that provide the best combination of antimicrobial activity, corrosion/oxidation resistance, and fabrication properties. Copper’s antibacterial effect was found to be intrinsic in all of the copper alloys tested. As in previous studies, no antibacterial properties were observed on stainless steel (UNS S30400). Also, in confirmation with earlier studies  the rate of drop-off of E. coli O157:H7 on the copper alloys is faster at room temperature than at chill temperature.
For the most part, the bacterial kill rate of copper alloys increased with increasing copper content of the alloy. This is further evidence of copper’s intrinsic antibacterial properties.
Efficacy on brass, bronze, copper-nickel alloys
Brasses, which were frequently used for doorknobs and push plates in decades past, also demonstrate bactericidal efficacies, but within a somewhat longer time frame than pure copper. All nine brasses tested were almost completely bactericidal (over 99.9% kill rate) at 20 °C within 60–270 minutes. Many brasses were almost completely bactericidal at 4 °C within 180–360 minutes.
The rate of total microbial death on four bronzes varied from within 50–270 minutes at 20 °C, and from 180 to 270 minutes at 4 °C.
The kill rate of E. coli O157 on copper-nickel alloys increased with increasing copper content. Zero bacterial counts at room temperature were achieved after 105–360 minutes for five of the six alloys. Despite not achieving a complete kill, alloy C71500 achieved a 4-log drop within the six-hour test, representing a 99.99% reduction in the number of live organisms.
Efficacy on stainless steel
Unlike copper alloys, stainless steel (S30400) does not exhibit any degree of bactericidal properties. This material, which is one of the most common touch surface materials in the healthcare industry, allows toxic E. coli O157:H7 to remain viable for weeks. Near-zero bacterial counts are not observed even after 28 days of investigation. Epifluorescence photographs have demonstrated that E. coli O157:H7 is almost completely killed on copper alloy C10200 after just 90 minutes at 20 °C; whereas a substantial number of pathogens remain on stainless steel S30400.
Main article: Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus
Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) is a dangerous bacteria strain because it is resistant to beta-lactam antibiotics. Recent strains of the bacteria, EMRSA-15 and EMRSA-16, are highly transmissible and durable. This is of extreme importance to those concerned with reducing the incidence of hospital-acquired MRSA infections.
In 2008, after evaluating a wide body of research mandated specifically by the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), registration approvals were granted by EPA in 2008 granting that copper alloys kill more than 99.9% of MRSA within two hours.
Subsequent research conducted at the University of Southampton (UK) compared the antimicrobial efficacies of copper and several non-copper proprietary coating products to kill MRSA. At 20 °C, the drop-off in MRSA organisms on copper alloy C11000 is dramatic and almost complete (over 99.9% kill rate) within 75 minutes. However, neither a triclosan-based product nor two silver-containing based antimicrobial treatments (Ag-A and Ag-B) exhibited any meaningful efficacy against MRSA. Stainless steel S30400 did not exhibit any antimicrobial efficacy.
In 2004, the University of Southampton research team was the first to clearly demonstrate that copper inhibits MRSA. On copper alloys — C19700 (99% copper), C24000 (80% copper), and C77000 (55% copper) — significant reductions in viability were achieved at room temperatures after 1.5 hours, 3.0 hours and 4.5 hours, respectively. Faster antimicrobial efficacies were associated with higher copper alloy content. Stainless steel did not exhibit any bactericidal benefits.
Main article: Clostridium difficile
Clostridium difficile, an anaerobic bacterium, is a major cause of potentially life-threatening disease, including nosocomial diarrheal infections, especially in developed countries. C. difficile endospores can survive for up to five months on surfaces. The pathogen is frequently transmitted by the hands of healthcare workers in hospital environments. C. difficile is currently a leading hospital-acquired infection in the UK, and rivals MRSA as the most common organism to cause hospital acquired infections in the US It is responsible for a series of intestinal health complications, often referred to collectively as Clostridium difficile Associated Disease (CDAD).
The antimicrobial efficacy of various copper alloys against Clostridium difficile was recently evaluated. The viability of C. difficile spores and vegetative cells were studied on copper alloys C11000 (99.9% copper), C51000 (95% copper), C70600 (90% copper), C26000 (70% copper), and C75200 (65% copper). Stainless steel (S30400) was used as the experimental control. The copper alloys significantly reduced the viability of both C. difficile spores and vegetative cells. On C75200, near total kill was observed after one hour. On C11000, near total kill was observed after 3 hours. On C70600, near total kill was observed after 5 hours. On C26000, near total kill was achieved after 48 hours. On stainless steel, no reductions in viable organisms were observed after 72 hours (3 days) of exposure and no significant reduction was observed within 168 hours (1 week).
Main article: Influenza A virus
Influenza, commonly known as flu, is an infectious disease from a viral pathogen different from the one that produces the common cold. Symptoms of influenza, which are much more severe than the common cold, include fever, sore throat, muscle pains, severe headache, coughing, weakness and general discomfort. Influenza can cause pneumonia, which can be fatal, particularly in young children and the elderly.
After incubation for one hour on copper, active influenza A virus particles were reduced by 75%. After six hours, the particles were reduced on copper by 99.999%. Influenza A virus was found to survive in large numbers on stainless steel.
Once surfaces are contaminated with virus particles, fingers can transfer particles to up to seven other clean surfaces. Because of copper’s ability to destroy influenza A virus particles, copper can help to prevent cross-contamination of this viral pathogen.
Main article: Adenoviridae
Adenovirus is a group of viruses that infect the tissue lining membranes of the respiratory and urinary tracts, eyes, and intestines. Adenoviruses account for about 10% of acute respiratory infections in children. These viruses are a frequent cause of diarrhea.
In a recent study, 75% of adenovirus particles were inactivated on copper (C11000) within 1 hour. Within six hours, 99.999% of the adenovirus particles were inactivated. Within six hours, 50% of the infectious adenovirus particles survived on stainless steel.
The antifungal efficacy of copper was compared to aluminium on the following organisms that can cause human infections: Aspergillus spp., Fusarium spp.,Penicillium chrysogenum, Aspergillus niger and Candida albicans. An increased die-off of fungal spores was found on copper surfaces compared with aluminium.Aspergillus niger growth occurred on the aluminium coupons; growth was inhibited on and around copper coupons.