Although it has been known for many years that ultraviolet C light (240-280 nm) is highly antimicrobial, it is remarkable that it has not been tested as an antimicrobial therapy in living beings. This lack of testing is probably due to the perception that UVC is highly damaging to host tissue producing cell death, tissue injury, DNA damage and even causing cancer. We have discovered that UVC applied in the correct dosimetry can effective eradicate pathogens (both bacteria and fungi) in mouse models of wound and burn infections. Only minor damage to host tissue was found  that was repaired in less than 24 hours, and wound healing was not impaired. Since it is unlikely that UVC for infection would be used repeatedly over a long period, we believe that it is safe and effective for superficial infections. One of the most promising clinical indications for UVC may be onychomycosis or T. rubrum fungal infection of the toenails.


Related Publications

Dai T, Tegos GP, Rolz-Cruz G, Cumbie WE, Hamblin MR. Ultraviolet-C inactivation of dermatophytes: Implications for treatment of onychomycosis, Br J Dermatol, 2008, 158:1239-1246.

Dai T, Tegos GP, St. Denis TG, Anderson D, Sinofsky E, Hamblin, MR. Ultraviolet-C Irradiation for Prevention of Central Venous Catheter Related Infections: An In-vitro Study. Photochem Photobiol. 2011, Jan-Feb;87(1):250-5. doi: 10.1111/j.1751-1097.2010.00819.x.

Dai T, Kharkwal GB, Zhao J, St Denis TG, Wu Q, Xia Y, Huang L, Sharma SK, d’Enfert C, Hamblin MR. Ultraviolet-C Light for Treatment of Candida albicans Burn Infection in Mice. Photochem Photobiol. 2011 Mar-Apr;87(2):342-9

Dai T, Vrahas MS, Murray CK, Hamblin MR. Ultraviolet C irradiation: an alternative antimicrobial approach to localized infections? Expert Rev Anti-Infect Ther. (2012), 10(2), 185-195,

Dai T, Murray CK, Vrahas MS, Baer DG, Tegos GP, Hamblin MR. Ultraviolet C light for Acinetobacter baumannii wound infections in mice: Potential use for battlefield wound decontamination? J Trauma Acute Care Surg. 2012 Sep;73(3):661-667.

Dai T, Garcia B, Murray CK, Vrahas MS, Hamblin MR. UVC light prophylaxis for cutaneous wound infections in mice. Antimicrob Agents Chemother. 2012 Jul;56(7):3841-8.

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