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Measuring microbial control

Physical and chemical methods of microbial control that kill the targeted microorganism are identified by the suffix -cide (or -cidal ). The prefix indicates the type of microbe or infectious agent killed by the treatment method: bactericide s kill bacteria, viricide s kill or inactivate viruses, and fungicide s kill fungi. Other methods do not kill organisms but, instead, stop their growth, making their population static; such methods are identified by the suffix -stat (or -static ). For example, bacteriostatic treatments inhibit the growth of bacteria, whereas fungistatic treatments inhibit the growth of fungi. Factors that determine whether a particular treatment is -cidal or -static include the types of microorganisms targeted, the concentration of the chemical used, and the nature of the treatment applied.

Although -static treatments do not actually kill infectious agents, they are often less toxic to humans and other animals, and may also better preserve the integrity of the item treated. Such treatments are typically sufficient to keep the microbial population of an item in check. The reduced toxicity of some of these -static chemicals also allows them to be impregnated safely into plastics to prevent the growth of microbes on these surfaces. Such plastics are used in products such as toys for children and cutting boards for food preparation. When used to treat an infection, -static treatments are typically sufficient in an otherwise healthy individual, preventing the pathogen from multiplying, thus allowing the individual’s immune system to clear the infection.

The degree of microbial control can be evaluated using a microbial death curve to describe the progress and effectiveness of a particular protocol. When exposed to a particular microbial control protocol, a fixed percentage of the microbes within the population will die. Because the rate of killing remains constant even when the population size varies, the percentage killed is more useful information than the absolute number of microbes killed. Death curves are often plotted as semilog plots just like microbial growth curves because the reduction in microorganisms is typically logarithmic ( [link] ). The amount of time it takes for a specific protocol to produce a one order-of-magnitude decrease in the number of organisms, or the death of 90% of the population, is called the decimal reduction time (DRT) or D-value .

A table showing a decrease in number as microbial cells die. At time 0 there are 10 to the 10 cells. At time 5 there are 10 to the 9 cells. At time 10 there are 10 to the 8 cells.  At time 15there are 10 to the 7 cells. At time 20 there are 10 to the 6 cells. At time 25 there are 10 to the 5 cells. At time 30 there are 10 to the 4 cells. At time 35 there are 10 to the 3 cells. At time 40 there are 10 to the 2 cells. At time 45 there are 10 to the 1 cells. At time 50 there are 10 to the 0 cells. A graph titled microbial death curve. The X axis is time and the Y axis is number of cells. Two lines indicate what this graph looks like using an arithmetic and logarithmic scale. Both lines begin at 10 to the 10 at time 0. The arithmetic scale drops quickly and is indistinguishable from 0 by 10 minutes. The logarithmic scale slopes at a clean diagonal. The D value is shown as the time it takes to move from 10 to the 6 to 10 to the 5; this occurs in 5 minutes.
Microbial death is logarithmic and easily observed using a semilog plot instead of an arithmetic one. The decimal reduction time (D-value) is the time it takes to kill 90% of the population (a 1-log decrease in the total population) when exposed to a specific microbial control protocol, as indicated by the purple bracket.

Several factors contribute to the effectiveness of a disinfecting agent or microbial control protocol. First, as demonstrated in [link] , the length of time of exposure is important. Longer exposure times kill more microbes. Because microbial death of a population exposed to a specific protocol is logarithmic, it takes longer to kill a high-population load than a low-population load exposed to the same protocol. A shorter treatment time (measured in multiples of the D-value) is needed when starting with a smaller number of organisms. Effectiveness also depends on the susceptibility of the agent to that disinfecting agent or protocol. The concentration of disinfecting agent or intensity of exposure is also important. For example, higher temperatures and higher concentrations of disinfectants kill microbes more quickly and effectively. Conditions that limit contact between the agent and the targeted cells cells—for example, the presence of bodily fluids, tissue, organic debris (e.g., mud or feces), or biofilm s on surfaces—increase the cleaning time or intensity of the microbial control protocol required to reach the desired level of cleanliness. All these factors must be considered when choosing the appropriate protocol to control microbial growth in a given situation.

Questions & Answers

reactions if viruses to physical and chemical agents?
All viruses contain the following two components: 1) a nucleic acid genome and 2) a protein capsid that covers the genome. Together this is called the nucleocapsid. In addition, many animal viruses contain a 3) lipid envelope. The entire intact virus is called the virion.
assume you have performed a gram stain on a sample of pus from a patients urethra. you see red, nucleated cells and purple rods. what can you conclude
Petty Reply
Study of micro organisation which we cannot see with naked eye...
shyam Reply
Despite their bad reputation, microbes are mostly beneficial or have a neutral effect on our lives. Microbiology is the scientific study of these microorganisms. Microorganisms are those organisms that are too small to see with the naked eye and include things like bacteria, fungi, and viruses.
not 'things'...'organisms' like bacterias, viruses and fungi
simi, it's not bacterias but bacteria which is the plural form of the word while bacterium is the singular of it
bacterium is obvio in a singular form but plural of bacterium is bacterias
Richard is right it's bacterium which is the singular form and plural is bacteria. *Bacterias* doesn't exist.
what is microbiology?
Sandeep Reply
what is microbiology
is the study of small microorganisms that can't be viewed by our naked eyes under a microscope
it's the study of microbes their classification, diversity, their cellular structure and processes, their applications and interaction with other organisms.
what is EMP pathway
which organism is implicated in meningoencephalitis
Peter Reply
Herpes virus
which mold is called dairy mold?
Geotrichum candidum
which infectious agent is the smallest
spore or virus
prion ....it is a single protein in a misfolded form..there is also a theory based on it
yup...m sry
yes it can be turned as a virus
which gram positive bacteria is responsible for food poisoning?
prion is not a living organism yet it is infectoois why
prions are virus like organism. and it is a misfolded protein that may cause disease to us.
Clostridium perfringens, B.cereus
Who is the father of the biology
I have one more question. . that who is the father of botany and medicine? ? can any one tell
define polar bond in simple way
Rashmi Reply
when there is formation of positive and negative poles i.e. one atom is +ve and other is -ve which further results in the dipole moment. Such bond is know as polar bond. It is a convalent bond only.
Hi everyone, is these site only about microbiology? I want a site which I can download articles on hematological and biochemical profile
Peter Reply
I think it is only about micro biology.
so whats happening
I am about to enter school and am going for MCB
Olugbenga Reply
What is DNA damage and repair
Sree Reply
removal of nucleotide bases from DNA is damage n addition or insertion of bases in DNA is repair.
replication is a term related to generation of new DNA from a parental DNA.
role of microorganism as pathogens
Parteek Reply
to live inside the host body, reproduction n destroy the immune system of host body.
what is replication
please give me ans
replication is a term related to generation of new DNA from parental DNA.
difference between endotoxin and exotoxin
Binkheir Reply
toxins released inside the cell or a body is endotoxin n toxins released outside the cell or a body is exotoxin.
Generally, exotoxins are produced by gram positive bacteria and endotoxins are the integral part of the cell wall of gram negative bacteria. But some gram negative bacteria can also produced exotoxins such as E.coli.
Yeah u r ryt aakarti exotoxins screted by gram postive bacteria nd secreted by cell surface and they are secondary metabolites ....On the other hand endotoxin released by gram negtive bacteria nd released inside the cell (lipopolysaccharide) ..
Heat stable lipopolysaccharides to be exact.
please I want the names of bacteria and the diseases they cause.
Ibrahim Reply
there are many we classify it according to their shapes gram negative or gram positive
so u may refer the book u guess or by when u want I can do a list for you and send u here
please do a list for me
I have the lost but it's too much to type ..
MSc entrance prepare books and questions LA etha base pani irukum..
Guhan Reply
kushal always prescott is the imp book to follow.search some objective mcqs books based on your syllabus
deepthi Reply
I want to clear entrance of ms university so I have no more idea so my preparation is based on my bachlor studies.
what are the opportunistic infection in aids stage
certain cancer or pneumonia 🤔
penicillium crysogenum
Kushal Reply

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Source:  OpenStax, Microbiology. OpenStax CNX. Nov 01, 2016 Download for free at http://cnx.org/content/col12087/1.4
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