There is a growing belief, which isn’t being discussed much, that silver based antimicrobial coatings are harmful. The silver nano-coatings are used on everything from medical supplies to socks, becoming more and more ever-precent in our lives with minimal understanding of the effects of chronic exposure. While you shouldn’t go and throw out your running shirt, it is something to be aware of. Since we have touched on this before, when a study came out highlighting the effect silver coatings have on chemo drugs we thought it was worth bringing up again. A team of researchers from the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) was examining potential issues in IV catheters used for chemo and found that silver used to prevent microbial growth was spurring an unfavorable reaction. Not only was the silver causing the chemo drug (5-Fu) to breakdown, the reaction was also releasing dangerous hydrogen fluoride gas. According to NTNU there have been relatively few studies as to how various drugs react to other substances and coatings they come in contact with. The good news is that there are other antimicrobial coatings, such as graphene, that are safe. Hopefully, thanks to studies such as the one at NTNU, they will become more widely used and help increase the effectiveness of cancer treatments.