I would like to ask for some advice concerning the work in P2 laboratory. It includes work with E. coli, Staphylo and Streptococcus.
I always disinfect workplace with 70% ethanol. I also clean the floor from time to time (not really often), with some detergent. However, I am mostly concerned about airborne contamination.
1) Is it possible to breath in some bacteria when I open the ependorf containing their suspension (mentioned bacteria)?
2) Should I put a mask when I open the incubator, since I feel its humidity and warmth (when taking and placing cultures)?
3) Why is it not advised to put things on the floor? Can bacteria travel on the floor and climb up the things?
4) Even though I wear gloves, is it possible to have bacteria on hands?
5) Can bacteria actually survive on any object or body part, if its dry and without nourishing media?
Thank you so much for your help and advice.
Well, I’d say that usually the floor is probably not considered as really clean. It’s not like the bacteria would actually climb up, but if you spill them, they will spread. But the floor thing is probably rather to protect your sample from contamination, not the other way.
You do have bacteria on your hands. Even if you sterilize yourself, you will hardly kill all of them and some will remain.
On a similar note, your skin is not that dry to prevent some bacteria to reside. Of course, most bacteria will be in places where you sweat and which are covered (hands, between fingers, armpit, crotch, hair etc.).