The detergency industry is moving quickly to find substitutes for MIT (Methylisothiazolinone) as preservatives, forced by a change in legislation that will take effect next May.
One of these substitutes is the Antimicrobial N2000: a 35% solution of dodecylguanidine hydrochloride (DGH) in propylene glycol/dipropylene glycol used to control algae, bacteria and fungi.
DGH is a broad-spectrum microbiocide for paper, industrial process water treatment and oil and gas applications. It acts as a detergent. It alters the cell wall of the target organism and stops the activity of a variety of enzyme systems. It reacts with anionic groups of cell membrane systems, thus interfering with permeability and transport mechanism. DGH is an active surface biocide that is non-sensitizing and therefore does not require hazard labelling.
This MIT substitute is effective at low concentrations and for a wide pH range. It is a cationic biocide especially indicated as a PT6 preservative for the formulation of fabric softeners.
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Its use as a PT6 preservative is especially recommended for fabric softeners due to its cationic character, presenting itself as an alternative solution to the use of MIT.
Fabric softeners are used during the rinse cycle in the washing machine and provide several beneficial properties such as:
– Soft feel, pleasant smell.
– Anti-static properties, easier to iron, etc.
– Softeners are typically mildly acidic and cationic.
Given all these properties, the application of DGH (marketed as Antimicrobial N-2000) in softeners for their preservation is very suitable.
The efficacy of Antimicrobial N-2000 at low doses has been tested on softeners (5%, pH=3.5), concluding that with only 500ppm of Antimicrobial N-2000 the softener can be considered well protected.