„To me the future is of more interest than the past, since I intend to live in it“
- assigned to Albert Einstein
An intact nature, clean water, healthy people and animals, secure and sustainable agriculture - all these are indispensable requirements for our future living. Our contribution to a healthy future focuses on one of the biggest challenges for agriculture, the environment and health – Rats.
Our innovative technology will result in preserving the environment and simultaneously avoiding rodenticide resistances and thus will make long-lasting changes to the worldwide rat problem.
Clean Solutions for a Dirty Problem
Fighting the Rat Plague – environmentally friendly and without suffering.
Rats eat up and pollute up to 10 to 25% of each year's worldwide crops. Rats settle on farms where they eat up and destroy up to 1 ton of food per farm per year. In addition, animals in animal farming are at maximum risk for rat transmitted diseases, e.g. swine fever, foot-and-mouth disease and bird flu. Today, farmers need to undertake maximum efforts to protect their property from rat invasions.
Rats gnaw wood, plastic and insulation materials, threatening the safety of buildings and factories. They destroy tubes, pipes, and even fundaments causing massive damage to buildings, production facilities, and infrastructure.
Above all, the most dangerous threat is that rats or their parasites do transmit fatal diseases, e.g. hantavirus infections that cause Ebola, the plague, SARS and leptospirosis, which can cause liver and kidney failure in its worst manifestations. And even more: deaths from meningitis (meningitis) caused by rat transmitted lungworms have been reported from the U.S.. Rats are known reservoir animals for ticks e.g., which in turn do transmit borreliosis and ESM (early summer meningitis). Furthermore, in the sewerage they are picking up multi-resistant germs, such as E. coli bacteria and in case of direct or indirect contact to their faeces, these germs are spread to employees of and patients in hospitals, sewerage workers or farmers e.g. and subsequently pose serious danger to men. As a consequence to the global mobility of our society, such germs and diseases thus are spread rapidly even over long distances.
Rat populations grow extremely rapidly. Every female rat gives birth to 4 – 12 pubs per throw and will throw 4-7 times per year thus adding up to 84 pubs per year. Taking in consideration all siblings and children’s children etc. of one female rat their progeny add up to up to 1000 descendants during her life span. Today’s estimates are 3 -4 rats for every human and rat populations are estimated 8 million in New York, 3-6 million in Berlin, 0,5 billion in whole Germany and some 30 - 40 billion animals worldwide. In addition: rats do not only proliferate but also mutate. In the UK, giant rats have appeared which can grow up to 1.20 meters length. Such giant rats are becoming an additional threat to the civilized world.
Rat control is hampered by increasing resistance to conventional coumarin-type rodenticides. In some parts of Germany, reaching from the Dutch border across the Ruhr area to Hannover, almost 100% of rats have become resistant to the 1st generation of rodenticides. Such resistant rat strains are endowed with a strong selection advantage. In consequence such resistant rats are spreading increasingly rapidly. Today’s estimates are that an average of 40 -70% of rat strains of the Western world have become resistant to the 1st generation of rodenticides.
Rodents remain sensitive to many of the 2nd generation of rodenticides, but those 2nd generation rodenticides are burdened from an extraordinarily high environmental toxicity and from extreme cross-toxicity with other animals. Furthermore, such 2nd generation substances are extremely resistant to degradation in the environment, which is why they strongly accumulate in soil and waters. They are even resistant to degradation in sewage treatment plants. In fact, the Federal Environment Agency of Germany (UBA) has proven that all waters, stagnant or flowing, have become polluted with 2nd generation rat poisons. In consequence such toxins have already reached the human food chain. Also non target animals (scavengers and predators), that feed from intoxicated rats, become poisoned ore when non target animals accidentally ingest such rat baits they accumulate the poisons in their bodies and subsequently die from it. Such secondary poisoning includes protected species such as birds of prey, foxes etc. and also pets (dogs, cats). For the aforementioned reasons, the use of such 2nd generation rodenticides is only permitted in closed spaces and their use is legally strictly restricted to trained personnel only.
Other means to fight rats such as impact traps, self-shooting systems and drop weights are per se limited in their use. In addition, rats are able to identify such traps as being fatal to their lives and subsequently avoid them. They even educate their breed to avoid them. Therefore, such traps and alternative rat fighting systems are not suitable to extinguish entire rat populations and are unable to prevent rat free areas from (re-)colonization.
On this background Prof. Dr. Dietrich Gulba has developed a completely new rodenticide.
A new era of rodenticides
The 3rd generation of rodenticides developed by our CSO, Prof. Dr. Gulba, is basing on the new type of direct acting oral coagulation.
As with conventional rodenticides of the 1st and 2nd generation, a time delay of (hours) to days passes between the ingestion of the poison and the lethality of the rat, a time span which is long enough that rats cannot link death with the bait ingestion and rats will therefore permanently accept the bait without developing bait shyness. As a result, a targeted and delayed effect can be achieved. Since rats, when they spot a new food source do send a "taster", whom they will observe after bait uptake for his wellbeing.
Therefore such delayed action of the rodenticide is crucial for its activity. Unlike conventional rodenticides, which act as synthesis inhibitors of coagulation proteins (indirect mode of interaction), our new rodenticide inhibits the coagulation cascade by direct molecular inhibition of specific coagulation factors (mono selective interaction mechanism). Such interaction cannot be bypassed (by alternative synthesis pathways as present in resistant rats). Since the agents are of relatively low molecular weight the formation of inhibiting antibodies is also highly unlikely. In consequence to the underlying molecular mechanisms of interaction the development of resistance to such agents is highly unlikely. At the same time, the biodegradability and low environmental persistence of the new rodenticides represent a further decisive advantage over current 2nd generation rodenticides. Even if bait boxes leak and the rodenticide leaks out into the environment or into the water, the active ingredients of the compound bait will dissociate quickly and accumulation of toxic concentrations in soil or water as well as toxicity for other animals is avoided. Further development of the rodenticide is planned to further increase the species selectivity (rat) and to modulation of the biological half-lives of the compounded agents by systematic molecular modifications and selection of the improved agents by high throughput technologies.
The effect of our next-generation rodenticide has been proven in a "Proof of Concept" study in January 2020. In february 2023 another study showed 100% efficacy.
Statement of the Federal Environment Agency of Germany as to the need for sustainable rodenticides:
An environmentally friendly rat poison is - an "unmet need"! Hence, such a rat poison would have a very positive ecological and social contribution as well as very interesting economic prospects. A game changer!
Further details can be found in our teaser.
November 2021 BIORoxx was rewarded the 2nd prize in the business plan competition KUER (Climate, Environment, Energy, Resources). KUER is the business plan competition of the NRW Ministry of the Environment
Last year we were invited by the Kompetenznetzwerk Umweltwirtschaft to represent the state of NRW at the Hannover Messe. Here, our pitch made us the "Winner of the Day" at the Start Up Stage of the Young Tech Enterprises.
At the TechTour Green in Cologne in September, we became the Award Winner and have now been invited to participate in the TechTour Sustainability in Essen on 23.11.2022.
BIORoxx has been approved eligibility for funding by the INVEST venture capital grant funding programme. INVEST refunds personal investors 20% of their investment.
Bioroxx GmbH needs further investments for the further development of the rodenticide.
If you are interested, please contact us via our contact form or via firstname.lastname@example.org.
We are looking forward to hearing from you!