Industrial thread maker Coats Plc has launched a new range of anti-microbial sewing threads that inhibit the growth of microbes and bacteria around seams.

The treated sewing threads, which have anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties, are thought to be a world first and will be marketed under the name 'Coats Protect'.

The treatment was developed in Coats' North American laboratories and is said to deliver "maximum protection" from microbes when applied to Coats' thread products.

The anti-microbial treatment creates a "zone of inhibition" that helps prevent the growth of odour and stain causing bacteria and pathogens around the seam. It is effective for up to at least 15 industrial laundry cycles.

Anti-microbial thread can be used in a wide range of sewing applications and benefits include helping keep products sterile, preventing product deterioration, fighting mould and mildew and providing stain resistance.  

Applications are expected to include products such as athletic footwear, military tactical vests, helmets and outdoor goods.