Industry Updates

Surgihoney in the fight against antimicrobial resistance – collaboration with University of Southampton scientists and surgeons



With millions predicted to die because of global drug resistance, the search is on for new solutions.

Surgihoney is a British medical innovation that could revolutionise treatment and help prevent a doomsday scenario where routine procedures become life-threatening.

The bioengineered, medical honey is a potent antimicrobial. It can destroy Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria, including multi-drug resistant strains, such as MRSA and Pseudomonas aeruginosa.  It is also effective against fungal organisms.

Surgihoney’s broad-spectrum antimicrobial activity is due to the sustained delivery of Reactive Oxygen.

Surgihoney has an EU CE mark and is already available on prescription in the UK for the treatment of wounds.

Professor Jonathan Cooke, Imperial College London and Manchester University, has researched Surgihoney and the role of Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS) in wound healing.

Professor Cooke, who has spent over 30  years in the NHS as a senior clinician, said: “Surgihoney is a highly effective antimicrobial wound dressing for existing infected, acute and chronic wounds, reduces infection rates after elective surgery and potentially offers a significant improvement for patients with chronic rhinosinusitis.

“It is a major step forward in the fight against antibiotic resistant bacteria.”

Matoke Holdings Ltd, the British biotech company behind Surgihoney, is collaborating with leading scientists and surgeons at the University of Southampton, where there is an internationally-renowned centre in respiratory biomedical research.

The Upper Airway Research Group is conducting some lab-based pre-clinical studies to demonstrate the effectiveness of Surgihoney in killing Staph. aureus biofilms implicated in patients with difficult to treat chronic rhinosinusitis.

Mr Rami Salib, Associate Professor of Rhinology and Consultant Ear, Nose and Throat Surgeon, who heads the Upper Airway Research Group, said: “The problem of chronic sinus infections not only impacts significantly on patients’ quality of life but these infections tend to be resistant to antibiotics and patients often end up needing multiple operations and a lot of antibiotics during their lifetimes.

“There is an emphasis on trying to develop new strategies and new therapeutic options to reduce reliance on antibiotics and the need for operations which are quite expensive.”

The current study involves laboratory research to test the ability of Surgihoney to kill bacterial biofilms. The aim is to extend this work into the clinical arena by conducting a small scale clinical trial to investigate its efficacy in treating chronic rhinosinusitis patients following endoscopic sinus surgery.

Ali Salamat, a Rhinology Clinical Research Fellow and ENT Specialist Registrar, has won a prestigious one-year research fellowship from the Royal College of Surgeons of England to conduct basic scientific research on Surgihoney’s antimicrobial profile.

Mr Salamat said once Surgihoney has been scientifically proven to effectively target bacterial biofilm in the laboratory, the team will work with Matoke Holdings Ltd to investigate new treatments.

Ian Staples, founder and chief executive of Matoke Holdings Ltd, said: “I am incredibly proud to be part of the team now working with some of the top clinical innovators in Britain to take this Reactive Oxygen technology into a wide arena of infection control.

“This technology could make a massive difference to world health in a huge range of clinical applications. Instead of talking about a global antibiotics catastrophe, it is very refreshing to be talking about a British solution.”

The Southampton Upper Airway Research Group consists of Mr Rami Salib, Associate Professor of Rhinology, Consultant ENT Surgeon and head of group; Dr Sylvia Pender, Associate Professor of Mucosal Immunology; Dr Ray Allan, Wellcome Trust Clinical Research Facility Post-Doctoral Fellow; Mr Ali Salamat Royal College of Surgeons of England Research Fellow and ENT Specialist Registrar; Mr Tim Biggs, NIHR Academic Clinical Fellow and ENT Specialist Registrar, and Ms Rebecca Holding, Research Technician.

For further information about Surgihoney and published research to date see



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