Bacteria Lab Report

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INTRODUCTION Bacteria constitute a large domain of prokaryotic micro-organisms. They are typically a few micrometres in length and have a wide range of shapes ranging from spheres to rods. Bacteria are the most diverse and abundant group of organisms on earth and in favourable conditions bacteria reproduce very rapidly by binary fission, an asexual process whereby a single cell divides into two with identical DNA. Under ideal conditions some bacterial species may divide every 10 to 15 minutes. Within in 24 hours a doubling of the population, at these time intervals, produces billions of bacteria with identical DNA. Most bacteria are useful to us and the environment but others are parasitic and cause disease, for this reason disinfectants are…show more content…
The concentration and potency of the disinfectant. The higher the concentration the more potent. 4. The quantity of disinfectant used. 5. The resistance of the targeted area to be disinfected. Many bacteria have developed immunity against modern day anti-bacterial solutions and disinfectants. 6. The organic load. Organic matter provides a physical barrier that protects microorganisms from contact with the disinfectant. Taking into account these factors of the effectiveness of a disinfectant will determine how well a disinfectant kills or inhibits the growth of bacteria. Disinfectants have a microbiocidal effect but are not sporicidal . Therefore disinfectants do not always sterilise a surface as they do not kill all fungal and bacterial spores and vegetative bacteria and fungi. The types of disinfectants we find can be classified according to the chemical compounds that make up the disinfectant and are classified into the chemical classes as follows: 1. Acids: Example: Acetic acid, Citric acid. Acidic disinfectants function by destroying the bonds of nucleic acids and precipitating proteins. Acids also change the pH of the environment making it detrimental to many…show more content…
Aldehydes are highly effective, broad spectrum disinfectants, which typically achieve sterilization by denaturing proteins and disrupting nucleic acids. 4. Alkalis: Examples: Sodium or Ammonium Hydroxide, Sodium Carbonate, Calcium Oxide. Alkaline agents work by saponifying lipids within the envelopes of micro-organisms. The activity of alkali compounds is slow but can be increased by raising the temperature. Alkalis have good microbicidal properties, but are very corrosive agents. 5. Biguanides: Example: Chlorhexidine. Biguanides are detrimental to micro-organisms by reacting with the negatively charged groups on cell membranes which alters the permeability . 6. Halogens: Examples: Chlorine or Iodine compounds. Halogen compounds are broad spectrum compounds that are considered low toxicity, low cost and easy to use. 7. Oxidizing Agents: Examples: Hydrogen Peroxide, Peracetic acid. Oxidizing agents are broad spectrum, peroxide based compounds that function by denaturing the proteins and lipids of micro-organisms. 8. Phenols: Phenols are broad spectrum disinfectants that function by denaturing proteins and inactivating membrane-bound enzymes to alter the cell wall permeability of

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