2001 Volume 24 Issue 9 Pages 1093-1096
We have synthesized new polycationic bactericides, poly[oxyethylene(dimethyliminio)trimethylene(dimethyliminio)ethylene dichloride] (OXD) and poly(hexamethyleneguanidine phosphate) (HEP), in order to develop more active but less skin-irritative bactericides. The effects of these bactericides on Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Escherichia coli, Serratia marcescens, Klebsiella pneumoniae, methicillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) and the degree of their irritations on skin were compared with those of a widely used low molecular-weight cationic bactericide, benzalkonium chloride (BAC), and a polycationic bactericide, poly[2-hydroxyethylene(dimethyliminio)methylene chloride] (2HYC). The minimum bactericidal concentration (MBC) of OXD for 10 min contact incubation was 16 μg/ml against P. aeruginosa, E. coli, S. marcescens and K. pneumoniae, and >1000 μg/ml against MRSA. The MBC of HEP for 10 min contact incubation was 16 μg/ml against P. aeruginosa, 32 μg/ml against E. coli and K. pneumoniae, and 64 μg/ml against S. marcescens and MRSA. Itch, edema, erythema, heat, injury, desquamation and keratinization caused by skin irritation were examined in 21 subjects by patch tests. Only one subject treated with OXD experienced edema, and one subject with HEP experienced keratinization. However, BAC caused itch in 3 subjects, edema in 1, erythema in 10 and desquamation in 2, indicating that the incidence of skin irritation of BAC was higher than that of OXD or HEP. OXD and HEP had sterilization ability similar to BAC, however, they were less skin-irritative than BAC. This indicates that OXD and HEP can be used as safe bactericides.