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In Vitro. 1976 Sep;12(9):643-8.

Spread and control of mycoplasmal infection of cell cultures.


Environmental sampling was performed during trypsinization and passage of 3T-6 cell cultures that contained a mean of 4.3 X 10(7) colony forming units (CFU) per ml supernatant of A. laidlawii. The lip of the culture flask and the outside of the used pipet were always heavily contaminated. The outside of the culture flask (3/7), the work surface (8/12) and the outside of a pan of disinfectant (4/5) were regularly contaminated with mycoplasmas. Airborne mycoplasmas were detected eight of 32 times (25%) by settling plates; simultaneous forced-air samplers by two different methods were always negative. The technician's hands were contaminated two of 15 samples. When hands were contaminated, more contamination was detected in the environment. Droplets of A. laidlawii and M. orale inoculated onto work surfaces survived drying for a minimum of 3 days, even in laminar airflow cabinets. Twenty-five of 31 (80.6%) cell culture technicians carried M. salivarium in their throats; only two carried M. orale. It is concluded that mycoplasma-infected clltures are the most common source of further infection. Recommendations for prevention and control of mycoplasmal infection are listed.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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