UV light and Bacteria Growth

Daniel B. Oerther oerther at students.uiuc.edu
Fri Sep 29 18:33:28 EST 1995

	UV light is great for killing bacteria, it damages the DNA 
(making little breaks) which in sufficient quantity can kill the 
organisms.  In a lower range, UV exposure is great for causing 
mutagenisis.  If you are interested in the ability of organsisms to 
sustain UV damage, and still survive, then look up Radiobacter Durans 
(spelling?).  These guys can handle up to 250 double stranded breaks in 
their genome (compared to 3 or 4 for E coli).  The problem with UV 
radiation for sterilization of human hands lies in the fact that you 
would be exposing human flesh to the same potent mutagen - not a good 
idea - can you see why?  Hope this helps...


Daniel B. Oerther
Environmental Engineering

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Room 4125 NCEL
205 N. Mathews Ave.
Urbana, IL 61801

voice: 217/ 333-6978
fax: 217/ 333-9464

On 29 Sep 1995, Michael Kaplan wrote:

> Hi! I'm a student preforming an experiment to measure the most
> effective way/combination to wash your hands.  If anyone has
> any information on the affects of UV on bacteria growth or 
> handwashing, I would really appreciate it if you would post it.
> Thank You
> Michael
> .

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