Ethidum bromide - (Mar/26/2009 )
Hi Conventrated Ithidum bromide was spilled on my clothes and It took 1 hour to change the clothes. I didnt wear any masques while cleaning the ETBR contaminated floor. Does it harm anything. I am bit scared of that.
madhu bysani on Mar 26 2009, 07:23 AM said:
This topic has been covered numerous times. Do a search on Bioforum's page for ethidium bromide and you can read all about it. The bottom line is that it is not as toxic as most believe. Don't worry about it.
Wow...I thought that stuff was a carcinogen!
sciencedork on Apr 3 2009, 11:05 PM said:
It's more of a mutagen then a carcinogen.
But as Dr Teeth said "Don't worry about it"
The best you can do is clean your hands regularly and try to neutralize your hands/ body with some dermal creams, like solvents, One major advise, please check your hands, or exposed body parts in the UV illuminator, if you find it glowing, consult your dermatologist/ cancer biologist. Usually it doesnt but I have read one such case already.
Wash your hands with hot water. Hmmm, and next time please dont be so irresponsible. The first aid requisites for the treatment of ethidium bromide should be available in the lab along with the protocol/ manual for operating the transilluminator/ BioRad machine. All the best.
This link gives the standard operating procedures with ethidium bromide..
all the best again
Exposing yourself to UV light from the transilluminator will do more harm than the EtBr itself. The recommended YEARLY dose of UV is 0.3 sec, so it is a REALLY bad idea to expose yourself to UV for long enough to see illumination of any spilled EtBr on your skin.
Well the amount of UV you will be exposing in the lab for less than a minute to check the illumination is not going to harm your skin by anyways. The intensity is not really that harmful, besides, the possibility of you getting a skin cancer due to prolonged exposure. Exposing once in 5 or 7 years for one minute will not cause any skin cancer, if the skin is sensitive might cause some irritation.
Anyway Ethidium bromide should only glow with DNA? Or is it alone fluorescent too? We had this discussion before, but I don't remember the result of it. According to wikipedia the fluorescence of pure EtBr is perhaps too low, as it rises by factor 50-100 when intercalating DNA.
If you try you should wear at least protective glasses, eyes are more susceptible to UV.
The irritation and redness that occurs following exposure to UV light (whether from the sun or from the lab) indicates that you have caused damage to your skin and hence your cellular DNA.
I believe it is irresponsible to suggest to somebody that deliberately exposing themselves to UV light is an acceptable way to check for a possible EtBr contamination, given that it is generally accepted that EtBr is relatively low risk, particularly compared with UV light.
UV radiation is well established as a cause of cancer and is one of the leading causes of cancer related deaths in my country. I have not heard of a single case of cancer that was attributed to EtBr.