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The formulation of household hygienic products from plant extracts with anti-house dust mite activity

Eureka Programme, E!339, 2006-2009

Although several previous studies have focused on the uses of Maltese medicinal and aromatic plants (MAPs) in ethno-medicine, only about 36 out of 458 locally occurring MAPs have been scientifically investigated. This project sought to determine the activity of extracts known to have been used in the past against mites, especially the house dust mite. Faeces from this mite are known to cause a wide range of severe allergic conditions, from eczema to asthmatic attacks, and the use of appropriate household hygienic products for the prophylactic control of this mite can prevent these allergic conditions in predisposed individuals. The project aimed to formulate plant extracts in various forms including detergents, degreaser, fabric softener, carpet cleaner, liquid soap, floor wash and fabric spray, and a number of tests were conducted to establish the stability of effective compounds.

This project was funded under the Eureka Programme with the support of Malta Enterprise, and further information can be obtained by contacting the Division of Rural Sciences and Food Systems.

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