In a recent paper in the Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy, Haydel et al. (2008) reported:
"The capacity to properly address the worldwide incidence of infectious diseases lies in the ability to detect, prevent, and effectively treat these infections. Therefore, identifying and analyzing inhibitory agents are worthwhile endeavors in an era when few new classes of effective antimicrobials have been developed. The use of geological nanomaterials to heal skin infections has been evident since earliest recorded history, and specific clay minerals may prove valuable in the treatment of bacterial diseases."
The researchers found that specific clay mineral products have antibacterial properties which have potential to treat numerous human bacterial infections.
Haydel SE, CM Remenih, and LB Williams. 2008. broad-spectrum in vitro antibacterial activities of clay minerals against antibiotic-susceptible and antibiotic-resistant bacterial pathogens. J. Antimicrob. Chemother. 61: 353-361.