Aequor has discovered new, "green" chemicals derived from novel microbes that it discovered. These chemicals will be sold alone or in combination as additives for sprays, washes, fabrics, paints, coatings, and therapeutics developed in-house or by Aequor's customers and strategic partners.
AEQUOR'S COMPOUNDS ARE UNIQUE
-- Nature developed highly effective chemical agents to impede biofilm and fouling formation on surfaces in contact with water
-- They are non-toxic to plant and animal life
-- They may be used in and around any source of water
-- They may be certified as organic and environmentally safe
-- Based on laboratory production, they are highly cost competitive
-- They may be certified as environmentally safe for use in and around environmentally-protected areas or areas restricted by statute for non-agricultural use
-- They do not require any special use, storage or shipment protocols.
The impact of these discoveries on human health and the environment is significant. The commercial applications for Aequor's prototype-stage research and development include:
-- Anti-Fouling Paints and Industrial Coatings:
The demand for new products is acute. Tributyl tin (TBT), the active anti-fouling ingredient traditionally used in marine paints, was banned by the United Nations in 2008. The marine industry is looking for non-toxic substitutes to impede the adhesion of foulants (microorganisms, barnacles, etc.) on rigs, pipelines, tanks and hulls of all ships at sea (military, cargo, passenger, pleasure craft), aquaculture gear, water intake pipes for electric power generation plants, cooling towers, etc.
Aequor's compounds impede fouling without harmful biocides when added to paints and coatings on all surfaces in contact wtih salt or fresh water. Since they are non-toxic, their removal and disposal require no special protocols and cause minimal environmental impacts.
-- Water Chemistry:
Aequor's compounds remove biofilm and associated contamination in water supplies, and in water processing and distribution systems.
Health: Biofilm forms during all stages of water procurement, treatment and delivery. The adhesion of foulants on water filters, storage vats, pipelines, etc. creates an ideal habitat for pathogenic bacteria to live and proliferate. This causes a constant threat to human and animal health, regardless of the source of the water. The control of biofims within drinking water systems is becoming increasingly important, particularly as climate conditions change, and temperatures increase to levels conducive to biofilm growth in wells and reservoirs. The removal of biofilm costs billions of dollars annually, currently through the use of chlorine dioxide and other chemicals.
Corrosion: Additionally, anaerobic sulfate-reducing bacteria can form and live in biofilm. These produce sulfuric acid which will corrode pipes and can result in leaks and degradation of surface materials. Anaerobic iron-oxidizing bacteria can cause serious corrosion to pipes, leading to high maintenance costs and loss of production.
Biofilm acts as an insulating layer on stagnant water. (As water has one fifth the thermal conductivity of carbonate scale, a 1mm biofilm has the insulating properties of a 5mm scale coating.) This results in greatly reduced heat transfer efficiency at heat exchange surfaces. Additionally, fouling raises the costs of alternative energy (algae and biomass), making them less competitive.
Frictional Drag - As a biofilm proliferates in a water intake pipe for an electrical production plant, for example, it reduces the diameter of the pipe. This causes frictional drag, and requires increased pumping power to compensate for the corresponding drop in pressure. This results in reduced efficiency and increased costs.
IAlgae/Biofuel - Particularly in algae pond production for biofuel, fouling represents a significant operational cost.
-- Sustainable Agriculture/Aquaculture and Food Safety:
Scientific communities worldwide are seeking an approach toward agriculture and aquaculture that will be sustainable from both an ecological and economic perspective. The use of toxic chemicals in agriculture (between one and 20 pesticide applications per acre per year) is negatively impacting the environment, and consumers’ perceptions of safe food. The runoff of toxic chemicals is polluting water sources worldwide. Sustainability requires the use of naturally-occurring, food-quality fungicides and pesticides that do not contribute to the degradation of the ecosystem. If food-grade substances are not toxic to humans or animals, they may appear on the EPA List 4A for 25(b) exempt status.
Once approved, Aequor’s organic, non-toxic substances could be widely used in commercial agriculture and aquaculture where biofilm-hosted bacteria cause inefficiencies and disease. Aequor's compounds coulld enjoy a privileged advantage in the fast-growing organic food market. Their use to reduce or eliminate biofilm on fresh produce and in packaged or bottled food and drink would also extend the shelf-life of those products through the storage, transportation, and distribution chains.
With regard to veterinary medicine, the reduction in the levels of antibiotics used in the production of poultry and beef could improve the public perception of food safety both in the U.S. and worldwide. Aequor's non-toxic compounds could contribute substantially to food safety from farm to fork, and in various aspects of bacterial control in the food service, restaurant, and consumer home markets.
-- Human and Veterinary Medicine:
An estimated 90% of all systemic infections are biofilm-related. Biofilms are extremely difficult to remove and treat with existing technologies because they can withstand high temperatures (>150 degrees C), biocides, antibacterials, host immune responses, and anti-infective compounds, including antibiotics. For example, the doses of antibiotics effective to disrupt bacteria in biofilms are approximately 1000X the doses needed to kill planktonic (free) bacteria. Doses at this level are environmentally undesirable and medically impractical. All of Aequor's tests to date indicate that its proprietary compounds do not kill plant or animal life, while many other anti-bacterial compounds are toxic, damaging to tissues, ineffective, or trigger the development of resistant strains.
Aequor’s compounds can be applied safely and directly to human and animal tissue to prevent infection and plaque (e.g. skin and mouth washes), and to prevent bacterial growth on surfaces, fabrics, instruments and materials in the clinical environment (including creating anti-inflammatory and antiseptic environments and coatings for catheters, transplants and prostheses). Additionally, Aequor's research indicates that the anti-biofilm compounds could signal the bacteria in a biofilm to revert to their planktonic form so that traditional, low-grade antibiotics could be used. Research in the field of genetic engineering indicates that anti-bacterial and/or anti-biofilm substances can be incorporated into pharmaceuticals, in-dwelling medical devices, and applied topically.
Aequor's non-toxic compounds could contribute substantially to human and animal health, reduce the incidence of infectious diseases, and reduce the need for high levels of antibiotics.
-- Consumer Products:
Oral Hygiene - Plaque is a biofilm caused by oral bacteria. While toothpastes and mouthwashes can kill some of these bacteria, those under the plaque and in inaccessible dental tissues proliferate. Unless professionally scraped off every six months, plaque can lead to gum disease and cavities.
Household surfaces are subject to bacterial contamination. Most disinfectants contain active agents that, in gested, are toxic.