Healthcare-associated infections are definitely no good, but neither is the overuse of antibiotics, as it creates resistant strains of bacteria. With that in mind, a new type of medical glove has been developed, that kills microbes without the use of added chemicals.

The gloves were developed over the course of six years by University of Nottingham microbiologist Prof. Richard James and Dr Paul Wight, working with colleagues from medical glove manufacturer Hartalega Malaysia and antimicrobial research and development company Chemical Intelligence UK. They utilize a proprietary technology which the university describes as "a new active microorganism-killing molecule."

This molecule is incorporated right into the material, meaning that no antibiotics have to be applied to the surface of the gloves, nor do any leach out into the environment. In lab tests, the gloves reportedly killed up to 99.9 percent of bacteria within five minutes of contact.

Plans call for the gloves to be produced "at a low cost," so that they will be affordable to hospitals around the world. Their European launch took place in London this Thursday.