Engr. Vera Marie L.

ChE Department
CIT University
Why is microbial control necessary?

It is mainly to inhibit the growth of
• it refers to the removal or destruction of all
microbes, including viruses and bacterial
endospores, in or on an object

• is an absolute term that implies the
complete and total removal of all living
• it describes an environment or procedure
that is free of contamination by pathogens

• Ex. vegetables & fruit juices are available
in aseptic packaging; surgeons & lab
technicians use aseptic techniques to
avoid contamination while doing their job
• it refers to the use of
physical or chemical
agents known as
• this term is used only
for treatment of
inanimate objects
• refers to a process of
using chemical or
antimicrobial agent on
skin or other tissue
• the chemical agent is
called antiseptic
• is the removal of microbes from a surface
by scrubbing
• is the process of disinfecting places and
utensils used by the public to reduce the
number of pathogenic microbes to meet
accepted public health standards
• is the use of heat to kill pathogens and
reduce the number of spoilage
microorganisms in food and beverages
What is microbial death?
Death – is a phenomenon that involves the
permanent termination of an
organism’s vital processes
Factors that affect Death Rate
1) Number of microorganisms.
2) Nature of microorganisms.
3) Temperature & pH of the environment.
4) Concentration of the agent.
5) Mode of action of the agent.
6) Presence of solvents, interfering organic
matter, and inhibitors.

How Antimicrobial Agents Work?
The cellular targets of physical & chemical
agents fall into 4 general categories:
1. the cell wall
2. the cell membrane
3. cellular synthetic processes (DNA, RNA)
4. proteins
Methods of Physical Control
 Heat
 Radiation
 Filtration
 Ultrasonic waves
 Cold

Moist Heat:
- hot water, boiling water, steam
(vaporized water)
- temperature ranges from 60-135
Dry Heat:
- that has been heated by a flame or
electric heating coil
- temperature ranges from 160
C up
What is the effect on
microorganisms when moist heat is
used as compared to dry heat?

Moist heat generally coagulates and causes
denaturation in microbes. In denaturation,
proteins separate as an insoluble mass as
they revert from their 3-dimensional
structure to a 2-dimensional structure.
In dry heat, the primary effect is due to
oxidation of large molecules; is a less
efficient process which requires a longer
period of process time
“Cold merely retards the activities of most

Lyophilization – a combination of freezing and
drying; a common method of preserving
microorganisms and other cells
Types of radiation that can be used as anti-
microbial control agents:
1) Ionizing radiation – include x-rays and
gamma rays, which form free radicals in
cytoplasm and the free radicals destroy
microbial proteins and DNA
2) Ultraviolet radiation – will effect nucleic acids
by binding together adjacent thymine bases;
microbes will die because DNA cannot
function or replicate itself
Ultrasonic waves
These high-frequency sound waves causes
vibrations that coagulate cellular proteins
and disintegrate cellular components.

Ultrasonic vibrations are commonly used as
cleaning agent for lab materials and as a
cell disrupters.
Modern microbial filters: cellulose acetate;
polycarbonate; plastic materials (teflon &
nylon) where pores size can vary from
coarse (8 microns) to ultrafine (0.02 micron)

Applications of Filtration
use to prepare liquids that cannot withstand
heat, including serum & other blood products,
vaccines, drugs, IV fluids, enzymes, and
use for decontaminating milk & beer without
altering their flavor
used in water purification
used in removing airborne contaminants that
are common source of infection & spoilage
Chemical Agents
Gases that can perform sterilization:
• ethylene oxide (ETO) is used to sterile
plastics (such as petri dishes)
• beta propiolactone (BPL) is used to sterile
• formaldehyde can be used for various

Qualities in choosing antimicrobial
chemical agents:
 rapid action even in low concentration
 solubility in water or alcohol and long-term stability
 broad-spectrum microbicidal action without being
toxic to human and animal tissues
 penetration of inanimate surfaces to sustain a
cumulative or persistent action
 resistance to becoming inactivated by organic
 noncorrosive or nonstaining properties
 sanitizing and deodorizing properties
 affordability and ready availability

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