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SCIENTIFIC EVIDENCE

Here we share scientific papers detailing the anti-microbial effectiveness and health benefits of true colloidal silver.

If you are seeking specific information in relation to scientific research relation to the use of colloidal products please email us and we will do our best to respond to your enquiry.

A CASE FOR RESEARCH IN THE QUEST FOR ANTIVIRAL AGENTS

Silver metal has long been known to have anti-microbial properties.
The use of silver containers to maintain the purity of liquids for long periods was a common practice in ancient civilisations. It is well documented, for example, that the Romans kept wine in silver containers to avoid mouldering.

In the pre-antibiotic era, silver was also extensively used by medical practitioners. In the early nineteenth century, doctors sutured surgical wounds with silver wires. In early 20th century, silver was used as a germicide in hospitals and silver leaf was applied to wounds of soldiers during World War I to avoid infections and facilitate healing.

The efficacy of silver colloidal dispersions as bactericides with no adverse drawbacks was commonly reported in prestigious medical journals. For example, T H Anderson-Wells reported in a1918 edition of The Lancet  the use of an intravenous preparation of colloidal silver 'without any irritation of the kidneys and with no pigmentation of the skin'. 
 
But by the late 1920s, antibiotics had become the focus of nearly all research interest. The use of colloidal silver remedies, notwithstanding that they seemed to be both effective and safe, decreased in popularity during the antibiotic era.
 
In very recent times there has been a recovery of interest in colloidal silver as an alternative drug to combat a variety of pathologies and diseases. The increasing number of antibiotic-resistant bacteria, especially, has led to increased interest. But, and this is the central point of this article, progress remains painfully slow and ‘niche’. It is not mainstream.

A CLARIFICATION OF TERMS

A good deal of misunderstanding has arisen because the term Colloidal Silver is so widely misused (particularly by poorly-informed media outlets and by vendors of cheap non-colloidal products). Very few people seem to be clear about what the term ‘colloidal silver’ actually means.
 
The most common confusion is between colloidal silver and ionic solutions of silver. And this difference, in terms of potential medical efficacy, is crucial. So what is a colloid? How can it be distinguished from an ionic solution - and why does it matter?

A colloid is an insoluble substance (silver, in this case) suspended indefinitely in a ‘carrying medium’ - usually distilled water.  A true silver colloid will contain at least 50 % insoluble silver particles suspended in pure distilled water. It will be coloured in shades of amber brown depending on particle concentration and size. A stable colloid will exhibit sufficient zeta potential of identical charge so that the particles can remain in suspension indefinitely.
 
In contrast, ionic solutions are clear; ions do not exhibit the 'Tyndall effect', which gives colloids their colour and distinctive chromatic texture. Ionic solutions are also very sensitive to light and are often stored in brown or blue bottles. So what about anti-microbial efficacy?

There is little doubt that ionic solutions can be highly reactive as anti-microbial agents (their good news). But they have the great drawback of forming compounds when they are taken internally - and these compounds have no antimicrobial properties at all (the bad news). Some of the resulting compounds, notably silver chloride, may cause the cosmetic condition known as argyria in very large doses. In other words, drinking ionic silver can do you little good and might even harm you if you consume enough of it.

Colloidal products are not as rapidly reactive as silver ions. But they have been shown to have similar antimicrobial properties in the longer term, with an indefinite lifespan until excreted. Indeed, colloids of silver cannot form compounds with any molecules found in the human organism.
 
Research has yet to determine whether or not (and, if so, how) colloidal silver might be effective against viruses within the human body. But they have great advantages over both ionic solutions and silver containing compounds: they are not readily metabolised in organic structures and are non toxic at any kind of normal dosages. They are no more toxic than the distilled water in which they are suspended.

PARTICLES - AND THE IMPORTANCE OF PARTICLE SIZE

A consistent finding in research concerning colloidal silver is that particle size is crucial for particles to achieve antimicrobial activity. Particles over 50 nm in size are considered to be ineffective. So, most researchers use particles of 30 , 20, and 10 nm – because these have been the smallest that are available to them. Recent advances in technology have enabled the production of colloidal silver products with even smaller particle size than were previously available – and the most notable commercial product is MESOSILVER TM. Mesosilver is a true particulate silver colloid containing 90% minimum silver particles with a mean dia of 0.61nm

Given that particle size is commonly acknowledged among scientists to be the single most important factor in the antimicrobial activity of silver, there is now a compelling case for the proper evaluation of colloidal silver in tackling a range of viral and bacterial pathology. A product of offering colloidal silver with this particle size has never before been available - and it has never been properly evaluated in controlled experiments. There is, in short, no conclusive evidence one way or the other.

This has not prevented colloidal silver from becoming the subject of much poorly informed criticism - most notably, and ironically, in media ‘fact checkers’. Currently there is no evidence one way or the other - and in view of the paucity of research, NOW is surely the time to act! As the UK agent for Mesosilver TM, we propose the following challenge:


purecolloids.co.uk is happy to offer its colloidal silver product, without charge, to any bona fide research organisation committed to objective evaluating research.
purecolloids.co.uk is interested in objectivity (see literature referenced below).
Currently, the opinions of fact-checkers concerning colloidal silver draws from individual biases rather than from any objective evidence.
 
Philip Marshall
www.purecolloids.co.uk

REFERENCES AND FURTHER READING

Medical Uses of Silver: History, Myths, and Scientific Evidence
Serenella Medici, Massimiliano Peana, Valeria M. Nurchi, and Maria Antonietta Zoroddu
Journal of Medicinal Chemistry 2019 62 (13), 5923-5943
DOI: 10.1021/acs.jmedchem.8b01439

A study on the minimum inhibitory concentration and minimum
bactericidal concentration of Nano Colloidal Silver on food-borne
pathogens Petrus, E.M., Tinakumari, S., Chai, L. C., Ubong, A., Tunung, R., Elexson, N., Chai, L. F. and *Son, R.

The Scope of Nano-Silver in Medicine: A Systematic Review

Deep Inder1* and Pawan Kumar2
1Department of Pharmacology, Jamia Millia Islamia University, India

Silver Nanoparticles in Therapeutics: Development of an
Antimicrobial Gel Formulation for Topical Use Jaya Jain,† Sumit Arora,† Jyutika M. Rajwade,† Pratibha Omray,‡ Sanjeev Khandelwal,‡ and Kishore M. Paknikar

Silver Nanoparticles as Potential Antiviral Agents

Stefania Galdiero 2,3,4, Annarita Falanga 2, Mariateresa Vitiello 1, Marco Cantisani 2, Veronica Marra 1 and Massimiliano Galdiero 1,3