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Sterilizing a Cell Culture Room - We had a flood + mold, where do I start? (Dec/01/2004 )

Hello all, we recently had a very large flood. The power has been out for a month, and just weeks ago we were setup with generator power. The problem is that the science cannot wait any longer. The water damage to the building certainly left mold, and we want to bring back up our cell culture room. Where do I start? Would autoclaving the shelves in the incubators be a good idea, or would washing them with iodine suffice? I have have disinfected the floors, walls, hoods, waterbaths, and the insides of the incubators with ethanol. Does anyone have any ideas or suggestions to help me through this process?



Hi Jim,

Formaldehyde vapour is very useful for fumigating room and incubators. For this formaldehyde is used in combination with potassium permanganate.

Add 35 ml formalin (37 or 40% formaldhyde) to 10 g potassium permanganate per cubic metre of space in a porceline or steel container. Immediately exit the room. Do not wait to see the reaction to start. Close room overnight.

1. It is important to evacuate persons from the room or area before starting fumigation.
2. One should be very careful to avoid accidental entry into the room while fumigation in progress.
3. Beware of splashing as the reagents react. The reaction generates heat.
4. Wear protective clothing, gloves, mask and safety glasses.
5. Avoid inhalation of the fumes