Manuka honey is effective at preventing biofilms Posted on 29 Sep 13:49

New research from the University of Southampton, published online in the Journal of Clinical Pathology on 27th Sep 2016, reports that Manuka honey is effective at preventing the formation of biofilms - communities of bacteria and other microorganisms.

Comvita’s Manuka Honey UMF®15+ was used in this study but the study was not funded or organised by Comvita.

This piece was reported in various media including:

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/science/2016/09/27/manuka-honey-could-fight-off-deadly-infections-in-hospital-equip/

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-3808974/Manuka-honey-used-medical-devices-stop-bacteria-building-up.html

http://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/honey-offers-a-sweeter-way-to-stop-infections-spreading-sf73qjr8p

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-37471076

 

Summary of the research as below:

Diluted honey inhibits biofilm formation: potential application in urinary catheter management?

This research, recently published in the Journal of Clinical Pathology, reports that Manuka honey is effective at preventing the formation of biofilms.

Biofilms are communities of bacteria and other microorganisms.  They form in moist environments by creating a sticky, glue-like substance that help them to adhere to surfaces such as urinary catheters, implantable devices, teeth etc.

Biofilms make it much harder to treat infections because the bacteria are covered in the slimy coating, making it harder for antibiotics to penetrate.  This can increase the severity of illness from infections because they cannot be treated as easily and antibiotic resistance can develop.

Much research has been done to look at both natural and synthetic substances that can either prevent a biofilm from forming, or help to disperse it once it has formed.

Since the 90’s, Manuka Honey has gained much attention for its unique antibacterial properties.  Also of interest is the absence of bacterial resistance to honey. These discoveries have led to the development of medical-grade Manuka Honey products for wound and skincare.   

Manuka Honey has been studied in both laboratory and clinical settings.  Previous research has shown that Manuka honey is effective at breaking up biofilms and preventing the growth of bacteria.