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Antimicrobial Pesticide Products Registered for Anthrax Spore Decontamination

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Current as of November 2012

On April 02, 2010, EPA granted registration for Steriplex UltraTM, an antimicrobial product used for anthrax spore decontamination. This makes two products EPA has registered for this use; Peridox with Electrostatic Decontamination System (Peridox) was registered in 2009. Previously, between 2001 and 2008, EPA issued emergency exemptions to allow an unregistered use of certain antimicrobial chemicals for cleaning up buildings and their contents contaminated with anthrax spores.

Antimicrobial pesticide products that are registered or licensed for anthrax spore decontamination are formulated to inactivate anthrax spores on dry, precleaned, hard, non-porous surfaces. These products can only be used by specially trained individuals to decontaminate buildings, structures, vehicles, ships, aircraft, personal protective equipment and other articles/items infected with anthrax spores.

Stringent Review

EPA reviews extensive data provided by applicants for registration, who wish to sell or distribute anthrax decontamination products, to ensure that the proposed products are effective and will not cause unreasonable adverse effects when used as directed.

EPA also reviews the labeling of these proposed products and associated training materials to ensure that they are consistent with EPA’s Pesticide Registration (PR) Notices 2008-2, which specifies the terms and conditions of registration that would apply to anthrax products.

Setting Guidelines

PR Notice 2008-2 was issued to provide guidance to prospective applicants for registration of antimicrobial products that make the labeling claim “inactivates Bacillus anthracis (anthrax) spores.” This guidance should help the United States be better prepared to respond to incidents involving anthrax spores by assuring that EPA registered anthrax-related products bear appropriate labeling and that they are effective when used as directed.

In addition, this guidance will help protect public health from the risks posed by anthrax spores by imposing terms and conditions of registration that limit the use of anthrax-related products. Anthrax decontamination products will only be sold to or used by Federal On-Scene Coordinators, the U.S. Military, and persons trained and certified to be competent by the registrant.

Anthrax is a severe disease caused by Bacillus anthracis. It affects both humans and animals. If untreated, it can cause acute illness or death.

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