A newly approved foundation CRC SAAFE project aims to use the antibacterial properties of Calix’s unique bioactive magnesium oxide materials to develop alternatives to antibiotics and other antimicrobials for livestock producers.
The project will evaluate the safety and antimicrobial efficacy of Calix’s bioactive materials, as well as develop products that improve animal health and productivity in intensive livestock systems with minimal antibiotic intervention.
The project builds on last year’s announcement that Calix is a Tier 1 partner in CRC SAAFE, a collaborative research centre established to develop, commercialise and apply new solutions to antimicrobial resistance (AMR) in agriculture, supported by more than A$112m in funding.
The successful development of effective antimicrobial alternatives can enable intensive livestock producers to help ensure animal welfare by managing disease, while minimising antibiotic use.
Following many years of antibiotic overuse, the rise in infections caused by antimicrobial-resistant bacteria is now recognised as a global crisis. The United Nations projects AMR will cost the global economy US$100 trillion and cause 10 million deaths per year by 2050.
AMR solutions are urgently needed to reduce the reliance on conventional pesticides, biocides & antibiotics, extend the life of remaining effective biocides & antibiotics, and help improve food safety and agricultural sustainability.
Calix’s magnesium oxide-based materials are non-toxic and exhibit unique bioactive properties that suppress pathogenic microorganisms, insect pests, and marine bio-foulants.
Early results indicate these novel materials are safe and attenuate both drug susceptible and resistant microorganisms with very low resistance development potential. They offer a generally non-lethal mode of action and display synergies with existing biocides and antibiotics.
A successful foundation CRC SAAFE project will help maintain antibiotic effectiveness and position Australian livestock producers as leaders in sustainability and AMR pressure reduction.
In addition to helping address the rise of antimicrobial resistance, the continued development of Calix’s bioactive materials offers multiple other potential applications that can replace polluting or damaging products in agriculture and marine coatings.