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Biomedica. 2005 Dec;25(4):603-8.

[Permeability to phi chi 174 bacteriophages in polyolephin membrane condoms].

[Article in Spanish]

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Instituto de Ciencias Básicas, Facultad de Medicins, Laboratorio de Microbiología, Universidad del Rosario, Bogatá D.C., Colunbia.


Membranes used for the manufacture of condoms eventually can develop tiny pores, thereby decreasing dramatically their effectiveness as a physical barrier against the transmission of infectious agents. A technique was designed that was based on the ability of bacteriophage viruses to trespass membranes and to infect certain bacteria species, and then developing lysis plaques in the colonies of the host bacteria. The effectiveness of 60 polyolefin condoms in preventing the diffusion of the bacteriophage phi chi 174(ATCC13706-B1), 27 nm diameter, was compared to 20 latex condoms. Physiological conditions such as pressure, pH, superficial tension, length, time of exposure and viral titre were simulated. A pressurization system was designed, in which compressed air was injected simultaneously to ten condoms. Four of the 60 polyolefin condoms and one of the 20 latex condoms were permeable to the virus. Therefore, at least 93% of the condoms evaluated were able to contain the virus. The difference in permeability between the two types of membranes was not statistically significant (P = 0.79).

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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