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Med Mol Morphol. 2012 Dec;45(4):199-205. doi: 10.1007/s00795-011-0560-5. Epub 2012 Dec 7.

Disinfective process of strongly acidic electrolyzed product of sodium chloride solution against Mycobacteria.

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Department of Microbiology and Infection Control, Osaka Medical College, 2-7 Daigaku-Machi, Takatsuki, Osaka 569-8686, Japan.


Electrolyzed acid water (EAW) has been studied for its disinfective potential against pathogenic microbes; however, the bactericidal process against Mycobacteria has not been clearly presented. In this study, to clarify the disinfective process against Mycobacteria, EAW-treated bacteria were examined against laboratory strains of Mycobacterium bovis (M. bovis), Mycobacterium smegmatis (M. smegmatis), and Mycobacterium terrae (M. terrae) by recovery culture and observation of morphology, enzymatic assay, and the detection of DNA. All experiments were performed with the use of EAW containing 30 ppm free chlorine that kills Mycobacteria, including three pathogenic clinical isolates of Mycobacterium tuberculosis (M. tuberculosis) and six isolates of other Mycobacteria, within 5 min. In morphology, the bacterial surface became rough, and a longitudinal concavity-like structure appeared. The intrabacterial enzyme of EAW-contacted bacteria was inactivated, but chromosomal DNA was not totally denatured. These results suggest that the bactericidal effect of EAW against Mycobacteria occurs by degradation of the cell wall, followed by denaturation of cytoplasmic proteins, but degeneration of the nucleic acid is not always necessary.

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