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ThermaPure Inc. Receives U.S. Patent on What May Be the Silver Bullet for Killing Bed Bugs and Their Eggs

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Ventura, CA -- As the bed bug epidemic continues to strengthen its grip on North America, ThermaPure®, ( the industry pioneer that developed the heat treatment process currently being used to effectively kill the blood-sucking pests and their eggs, has been awarded another patent from the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office (US 7,690,148 B2 – Hedman, issued April 6, 2010).

"This is a really exciting new patent because it combines two highly effective technologies into what we believe is the most powerful, deadly punch that can be delivered to bed bugs," said David Hedman, CEO of ThermaPure, and the patent's inventor. "ThermaPureHeat kills bed bugs and their eggs throughout a structure in a single treatment, and the use of silica-based products provide a synergistic and residual effect that will kill bed bugs that may be reintroduced to the premises. This lethal, extremely effective combination is being used very successfully by ThermaPure licensees across North America."

The ThermaPureHeat® process uses a combination of carefully applied and monitored heat, air circulation and air filtration to penetrate the structure – including wall cavities, structural members, and cracks and crevices – with a level of heat that is lethal to bed bugs and their eggs, normally with just a single application. Many scientists studying the bed bug epidemic point to heat as the most effective solution currently available.

The patent also includes the application of silica gels as part of a ThermaPureHeat treatment as a preventive measure against bed bugs being reintroduced to the structure. The gels serve as absorbents or irritants to damage the waxy outer coating of the bugs, which are then highly susceptible to dehydration and death.

"ThermaPureHeat is a wonderful concept that has been perfected for killing bed bugs and their eggs," added Dr. Michael Linford, president of TPE Associates, and one of the pest control industry pioneers in the use of heat technology for the eradication of insects. "But consumers need to be aware that not all heat treatments are ThermaPureHeat treatments. Many heat treatments are conducted by pest control companies who have simply attempted to copy ThermaPure, but do not have well trained employees. They do not understand how to properly, effectively, and safely deploy heat throughout a structure. "

Many of these other companies also do not use special filtration to capture the microbiological and chemical contaminants that are sent airborne during the heating process, putting both their workers and the consumer potentially in harm's way.

In addition to eliminating bed bugs, the green process (typically no pesticides or other harmful chemicals are needed) also sanitizes the structure by killing bacteria, many viruses, many types of mold and many insects. ThermaPureHeat also oxidizes odors, and denatures many allergens. Patented ThermaPureHeat also reduces many volatile organic compounds, including formaldehyde, which is often found in prefabricated structures, such as portable school classrooms, as well as in some building materials.

About Bed Bugs

There are at least 70 different kinds of bed bugs across the world. The blood-sucking parasites are wingless, dark reddish-brown, oval and flat insects. Full-size adults are typically about the size of an apple seed -- less than one quarter-inch long -- and often mature in about four weeks after hatching, if a host is available. An adult bed bug can live more than a year on a single blood meal. Bed bugs have mouth parts that are both piercing and sucking, and their saliva acts as a numbing and anti-coagulant agent. People who are sensitive to bed bug bites are actually reacting to the pest's saliva.

Bed bugs can endure freezing temperatures and use a variety of hosts besides humans, including poultry, rodents, dogs, cats, birds and bats. Although humans rarely feel the approximately 15 minute-long bite some people show sensitive reactions to it. An indication of bed bugs is small blood spots on bed sheets, or in the folds of mattresses.

Bed bugs hide in cracks and crevices during the day, and often come out at night to feed (although they will take a blood meal during daylight hours). They are found around mattresses, behind picture frames, in nightstands, stuffed furniture, behind loose wallpaper, under the edges of carpet and padding, inside wall voids, and other enclosed spaces.

Bed bugs will crawl a substantial distance to obtain a blood meal. This is particularly a problem in the hotel industry, where customers can pay several hundreds dollars a night for their room, and awaken with bed bug bites and bloodied sheets.

Like every living thing, bed bugs have a "thermal death point," that is the temperature at which they cannot survive. For bed bugs and their eggs, research has shown lethal temperatures begin at a sauna-like 115 degree Fahrenheit (for a one-hour duration). However, to ensure that bed bugs and their eggs are destroyed, the ThermaPureHeat process carefully and safely raises the temperature of a structure to between 120 degrees and 160 degrees Fahrenheit for a prescribed period of time to ensure the heat penetrates into the walls, cracks and crevices.

About ThermaPure®

ThermaPure ( is a Ventura, California-based company. It's green, environmentally-friendly ThermaPureHeat® process performs structural pasteurization to kill insects, including bed bugs and termites, mold, bacteria, viruses and allergens.

The ThermaPureHeat process is currently licensed to more than 50 quality pest control and environmental companies in North America, including Orkin, Terminex, Gold Seal, and Copesan companies, including Sprague Pest Control and Western Exterminator Company.

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