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Chapter 2 : Physical Disinfection

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Physical Disinfection, Page 1 of 2

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Abstract:

Disinfection is the antimicrobial reduction of the number of viable microorganisms on a product or surface to a level previously specified as appropriate for its intended further handling or use. This chapter considers the most widely used methods of physical disinfection, including heat (moist- and dry-heat methods), cold, radiation, and filtration. Filtration methods are not considered truly biocidal, because the basic principle of action is the physical removal of microbial contamination from liquids and gases (including air) rather than their inactivation; despite this, some consideration is given to filtration as a method of physical disinfection or sterilization. Physical biocidal methods include high and low temperatures; heat-based processes are among the most efficient and convenient techniques of disinfection including specific and widely utilized processes such as pasteurization for the treatment of solid and liquid food. Nonionizing radiation methods, including low-energy UV light, are also considered to be disinfectants, with ionizing radiation technologies further considered in chapter 5, since they are primarily used as sterilization methods.

Citation: McDonnell G. 2017. Physical Disinfection, p 61-84. In McDonnell G, Antisepsis, Disinfection, and Sterilization: Types, Action, and Resistance, Second Edition. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555819682.ch2
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Figures

Image of FIGURE 2.1
FIGURE 2.1

Typical microbial sensitivity to moist heat disinfection.

Citation: McDonnell G. 2017. Physical Disinfection, p 61-84. In McDonnell G, Antisepsis, Disinfection, and Sterilization: Types, Action, and Resistance, Second Edition. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555819682.ch2
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Image of FIGURE 2.2
FIGURE 2.2

Effect of temperature on microbial lethality and -value determination.

Citation: McDonnell G. 2017. Physical Disinfection, p 61-84. In McDonnell G, Antisepsis, Disinfection, and Sterilization: Types, Action, and Resistance, Second Edition. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555819682.ch2
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Image of FIGURE 2.3
FIGURE 2.3

A pasteurizer for heat treatment of liquids. Image courtesy of System Projects, Ltd.

Citation: McDonnell G. 2017. Physical Disinfection, p 61-84. In McDonnell G, Antisepsis, Disinfection, and Sterilization: Types, Action, and Resistance, Second Edition. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555819682.ch2
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Image of FIGURE 2.4
FIGURE 2.4

Moist heat resistance of microorganisms.

Citation: McDonnell G. 2017. Physical Disinfection, p 61-84. In McDonnell G, Antisepsis, Disinfection, and Sterilization: Types, Action, and Resistance, Second Edition. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555819682.ch2
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Image of FIGURE 2.5
FIGURE 2.5

Atomic structure and the source of radiation.

Citation: McDonnell G. 2017. Physical Disinfection, p 61-84. In McDonnell G, Antisepsis, Disinfection, and Sterilization: Types, Action, and Resistance, Second Edition. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555819682.ch2
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Image of FIGURE 2.6
FIGURE 2.6

The electromagnetic spectrum. The range of wavelengths is shown on the axis in meters, with the longest wavelengths on the left (radio waves) and shortest on the right (γ rays).

Citation: McDonnell G. 2017. Physical Disinfection, p 61-84. In McDonnell G, Antisepsis, Disinfection, and Sterilization: Types, Action, and Resistance, Second Edition. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555819682.ch2
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Image of FIGURE 2.7
FIGURE 2.7

A representation of a typical UV (low-pressure UV mercury) lamp and the generation of UV radiation.

Citation: McDonnell G. 2017. Physical Disinfection, p 61-84. In McDonnell G, Antisepsis, Disinfection, and Sterilization: Types, Action, and Resistance, Second Edition. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555819682.ch2
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Image of FIGURE 2.8
FIGURE 2.8

Simple structure of a magnetron used for the production of microwaves. Voltage applied to a central cathode causes the release of electrons (shown as black circles), which are forced to circulate by the attraction to the anode and the effect of the surrounding magnetic field. Microwaves are released as the circulating electrons lose their energy.

Citation: McDonnell G. 2017. Physical Disinfection, p 61-84. In McDonnell G, Antisepsis, Disinfection, and Sterilization: Types, Action, and Resistance, Second Edition. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555819682.ch2
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Image of FIGURE 2.9
FIGURE 2.9

A simple continuous-duty UV disinfection system for liquids. The UV light is encased centrally in a chamber through which the liquid flows.

Citation: McDonnell G. 2017. Physical Disinfection, p 61-84. In McDonnell G, Antisepsis, Disinfection, and Sterilization: Types, Action, and Resistance, Second Edition. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555819682.ch2
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Image of FIGURE 2.10
FIGURE 2.10

The theory of filtration. Various types of filtration processes are shown, with larger particles being retained by the filter and smaller particles allowed through the filter. Dead end (A and B) and cross-flow filters (C) are shown. Simple screen filter. Depth screen filter. Cross-flow filter.

Citation: McDonnell G. 2017. Physical Disinfection, p 61-84. In McDonnell G, Antisepsis, Disinfection, and Sterilization: Types, Action, and Resistance, Second Edition. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555819682.ch2
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Image of FIGURE 2.11
FIGURE 2.11

The microscopic structure of the surface of three filter materials. Image courtesy of GE Healthcare Lifesciences, with permission.

Citation: McDonnell G. 2017. Physical Disinfection, p 61-84. In McDonnell G, Antisepsis, Disinfection, and Sterilization: Types, Action, and Resistance, Second Edition. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555819682.ch2
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Image of FIGURE 2.12
FIGURE 2.12

Examples of various types of filters used for liquids (left), in laboratories (upper right), and for air filtration (HEPA filter; lower right). Images courtesy of Pall Corporation. © PallCorporation, 2017.

Citation: McDonnell G. 2017. Physical Disinfection, p 61-84. In McDonnell G, Antisepsis, Disinfection, and Sterilization: Types, Action, and Resistance, Second Edition. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555819682.ch2
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Image of FIGURE 2.13
FIGURE 2.13

A rigid-wall isolator system, with glove access ports on the front and transfer hatches on either side.

Citation: McDonnell G. 2017. Physical Disinfection, p 61-84. In McDonnell G, Antisepsis, Disinfection, and Sterilization: Types, Action, and Resistance, Second Edition. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555819682.ch2
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Image of FIGURE 2.14
FIGURE 2.14

Air pressure in environmental controlled enclosed areas. Rooms under negative pressure draw air into the room, maintaining microorganisms within the room. Negative pressure is typically used in rooms or cabinets where pathogenic microorganisms are manipulated. Rooms under positive pressure force air out of the room to reduce the risk of contaminants entering the room. Uses of positive pressure include clean rooms and sterility test isolators.

Citation: McDonnell G. 2017. Physical Disinfection, p 61-84. In McDonnell G, Antisepsis, Disinfection, and Sterilization: Types, Action, and Resistance, Second Edition. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555819682.ch2
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Image of FIGURE 2.15
FIGURE 2.15

Biological safety classes I, II, and III. Class I cabinets provide the lowest level of biological control, with all air leaving the cabinet passing through a HEPA filter. In contrast, class III cabinets provide the highest level of control; they are totally enclosed, with access using a glove-port, as shown.

Citation: McDonnell G. 2017. Physical Disinfection, p 61-84. In McDonnell G, Antisepsis, Disinfection, and Sterilization: Types, Action, and Resistance, Second Edition. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555819682.ch2
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Image of FIGURE 2.16
FIGURE 2.16

Range of filtration methods and reference size exclusion capabilities. Note that the size ranges are shown on a log scale.

Citation: McDonnell G. 2017. Physical Disinfection, p 61-84. In McDonnell G, Antisepsis, Disinfection, and Sterilization: Types, Action, and Resistance, Second Edition. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555819682.ch2
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References

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Tables

Generic image for table
TABLE 2.1

Examples of standards and guidelines on heat disinfection

Citation: McDonnell G. 2017. Physical Disinfection, p 61-84. In McDonnell G, Antisepsis, Disinfection, and Sterilization: Types, Action, and Resistance, Second Edition. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555819682.ch2
Generic image for table
TABLE 2.2

The wavelengths and energies of electromagnetic radiation

Citation: McDonnell G. 2017. Physical Disinfection, p 61-84. In McDonnell G, Antisepsis, Disinfection, and Sterilization: Types, Action, and Resistance, Second Edition. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555819682.ch2
Generic image for table
TABLE 2.3

Types of UV radiation

Citation: McDonnell G. 2017. Physical Disinfection, p 61-84. In McDonnell G, Antisepsis, Disinfection, and Sterilization: Types, Action, and Resistance, Second Edition. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555819682.ch2
Generic image for table
TABLE 2.4

The infrared wavelength range

Citation: McDonnell G. 2017. Physical Disinfection, p 61-84. In McDonnell G, Antisepsis, Disinfection, and Sterilization: Types, Action, and Resistance, Second Edition. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555819682.ch2
Generic image for table
TABLE 2.5

Typical uses of filtration for liquid and gas applications

Citation: McDonnell G. 2017. Physical Disinfection, p 61-84. In McDonnell G, Antisepsis, Disinfection, and Sterilization: Types, Action, and Resistance, Second Edition. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555819682.ch2
Generic image for table
TABLE 2.6

The classification of clean rooms, based on number of particles of ≥0.5 μm detected within a given volume of air

Citation: McDonnell G. 2017. Physical Disinfection, p 61-84. In McDonnell G, Antisepsis, Disinfection, and Sterilization: Types, Action, and Resistance, Second Edition. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555819682.ch2
Generic image for table
TABLE 2.7

Examples of standards and guidelines on disinfection and sterilization filtration applications

Citation: McDonnell G. 2017. Physical Disinfection, p 61-84. In McDonnell G, Antisepsis, Disinfection, and Sterilization: Types, Action, and Resistance, Second Edition. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555819682.ch2

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