Malaria, a disease carried by the common mosquito, remains a serious global health issue affecting up to half a billion people a year, and hits the third world particularly hard. Now, UK-based Vaporised Lighting Ltd can help poorer countries beat the problem with its Multi Purpose Vapour Delivery System, which uses heat generated from any light bulb to thermally disperse insecticide or oils.
The award-winning, patented product works with domestic light bulbs - either standard incandescent or low energy lamps – and is therefore extremely cheap to use. It also creates artificial environments for use in delivering pest control and disinfectant in buildings such as greenhouses and operating theatres
According to the Glaxo Smith Kline African Malaria Partnership*, young children and pregnant women are particularly vulnerable to malaria and, although this disease can easily and inexpensively be prevented and treated, over one million African children die from it each year. Furthermore, malaria costs African countries an annual US$12 billion in healthcare and lost productivity, yet only a small fraction of this amount is spent combating the disease.
President George W. Bush in a Malaria Awareness Day proclamation on
April 24, 2007, said: "By standing with the people of Africa in the fight against malaria, we can help lift a burden of unnecessary suffering, provide hope and health, and forge lasting friendships."
With this in mind, the advantage of the Vaporised Lighting delivery system is that it disperses a highly effective insecticide via a light bulb – a method that is widely available in the third world, as opposed to current ‘plug-in’ dispensers which are not useable in every home and have poor availability. The Multi Purpose Vapour Delivery System is therefore affordable for even the poorest country to deploy.
By cleverly using the heat generated from a light bulb to operate the system, associated running costs are avoided. Vaporised Lighting has laboratory-accredited mosquito repellent reports from i2L Insect Investigations, where ongoing and accredited test results delivered a 97% average knockdown of 100 mosquitoes exposed to organic pyrethrum over a 24 hour period, in a 33 m3 room.
In recognition of its effectiveness, the Multi Purpose Vapour Delivery System has been awarded a medal for technical innovation at the prestigious Geneva Inventors’ Show (http://www.inventions-geneva.ch). This is the second accolade awarded to the product. Co-inventor, Melodie McKenzie-Jones, was a finalist for the ‘British Female Inventors and Innovators Award’ (http://www.gwiin.com) in early 2007, receiving a special recognition of achievement.
Following four years of research and development, the company has developed a range of applications in the chemical, medical, household, and horticultural sectors. True to its name, the Multi Purpose Vapour Delivery System can be employed wherever an artificial environment is required – for example in greenhouses, operating theatres and for airline fogging. It was developed with the support of multi-national companies, including DuPont and Henkel/Loctite.
The versatile system can be used as a simple air freshener, replacing the traditional aerosol sprays or ‘plug-ins’, or as a delivery system for treatments to prevent or suppress infectious diseases.
The product is housed in a polymer casing which holds a refillable sinter (dispersion unit). This is attached to the light bulb with a special adhesive, developed in association with Henkel/Loctite. It can be used at any height, allowing it to be mounted on lamps as well as on main lighting systems. The system can be easily removed and if appropriate re-infused with the chosen chemicals or oils.
At present, the technology exists as a pre-production prototype and as a component part of the traditional light bulb. Vaporised Lighting has also developed alternative technology that will allow the component to be simply clipped on to an existing bulb.
Melodie McKenzie-Jones, co-inventor of the Multi Purpose Vapour Delivery System, said: “Recent estimates suggest the global burden of malaria is in excess of 500 million cases per year. The majority of malaria outbreaks are found in underdeveloped countries. Thanks to its refillable sinter for the dispersion of insecticide, our invention could have a significant impact on malaria prevention world-wide.”
She adds: “Winning the Technical Innovation Medal at Geneva was the culmination of four years’ hard work. The product has many applications, particularly in the health care markets. It provides an opportunity for suitable global manufacturers or distributors, and has already generated a great deal of interest from multi-national organisations.”
Vaporised Lighting Ltd is planning to take the Multi Purpose Vapour Delivery System to market through licensing agreements with client partners.