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Manuka honey ‘sandwiches’ used in operations to fight infection

Honey is not just tasty, it is also really useful in medicine because it has antibacterial properties, which means it can be used to kill germs.

Now scientists have been looking into how honey sandwiched between layers of mesh could help people who have had operations avoid getting infections.

Engineers and scientists at Newcastle and Ulster University put small amounts of manuka honey between layers of the surgical mesh used in operations and added electricity to make it into a coating.

The coating on the mesh stops bacteria from growing for up to three weeks as the honey is slowly released.

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Dr Piergiorgio Gentile, biomedical engineer at Newcastle University, said: “Mesh is implanted inside the body to provide stability while the internal tissues heal.

“Honey has been used to treat infected wounds for thousands of years but this is the first time it has been shown to be effective at fighting infection in cells from inside the body.”