I use chloroform vapours to kill bacteria during antimicrobial activity screening. And while it seems to be a way to proceed in multiple articles, I cannot find how the chloroform actually affects bacteria. Does it disrupt the cell membrane (I don't think so)? Is it just toxic but leaving the cell intact?
chloroform effects on bacteria
Posted 12 August 2014 - 05:24 PM
Posted 13 August 2014 - 05:06 AM
The means of antimicrobial action for most synthetic chemicals remains obscure or is presumptive based largely on superficial data. Have you generated data validating that chloroform is effective as a bactericidal agent in your application?
Posted 13 August 2014 - 06:09 AM
it does the work for my application though it may not always reach deeper layers of the colony, as sometimes, if the superficial layer of the colony is teared off when pouring the agar with the indicator strain, regrowth of the first colony may be observed in the second layer of agar. But it works most of the time with my bacterial strains
Posted 14 August 2014 - 12:56 AM
Chloroform disrupts membranes like many other hydrophobic organic solvents. You just need to know the log Pow to know that the chloroform is going to affect the membranes.
It has been used to fumigate soils in microbiology for ages but it doesn't really affect to the enzymes unless it appears in high concentrations like in the DNA extraction protocols:
And also in the lab, 1-10 mL of chloroform per L of media, or other sensitive stocks, was usually recommended to avoid any growth in the bottles and ensuring they stayed sterile for long in the old times.