According  to  a  study  the  amount  of  bacteria  in  an  elevator  is  about  40  times  higher  than  on  a  public  toilet  seat.  Research  carried  out showed that  the  level  of  bacteria  on  elevator  buttons  averaged  313  colony  forming  units  (CFU’s)  per  square  centimetre  compared  to  8  CFU’s on  the average  toilet  seat.  Among  the  common  bacteria  likely  to  be  found  are  E.  coli,  Staphylococcus  aureus  and  methicillin‐resistant Staphylococcus aureus  (MRSA).  Nicholas  Moon,  PhD,  director  of  technical  and  regulatory  affairs  at  Microban  Europe,  for  which  the  research was carried  out, explains,  "In  a  busy  building,  an  elevator  button  can  be  touched  by  dozens  of  different  people  who  will  have  come  into  contact with  all  kinds of  bacteria  evey  hour.  Even  if  the  buttons  are  cleaned  regularly,  the  potential  for  the  build‐up  of  bacteria  is  high.  It  is  easy to see  that  in some  environments,  perhaps  especially  airports  and  hotels  where  there  are  thousands  of  people  from  different  places  regularly touching  lift buttos,  that  they  could  be  a  major  potential  point  for  cross‐contamination  and  the  spread  of  disease."  

Microban’s  research  was  conducted  by the  University  of  Arizona  by  collecting  samples  from  hotels,  restaurants,  banks,  offices  and  airports.  The buttons  were  swabbed  with  Spongesicle containing  10ml  of  neutralizing  buffer.  The  estimated  surface  swabbed  on  each  button  was  7.06 square centimeters.  Agar  plates  were  incubated for  five  days  at  30  degrees  centigrade  and  bacteria  colonies  were  then  counted.  Microban’s laboratoties  hold  ISO  9001  accreditation.