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Name: Adele C.
Status: Educator
Age: 20s
Location: N/A
Country: N/A
Date: N/A 

How do
a) anti-bacterial soaps, and
b) bleaches kill bacteria.

You ask for details. Rather than going the wrong direction I report a number of websites with detailed information in different directions. There is a good article on antibacterial soaps in Scientific American, on-line at

Most anti-bacterial soaps contain Triclosan, a toxin that inhibits an enzyme required for fatty acid biosynthesis.


for detailed information on Triclosan Other relevant sites on this subject: (a warning for overuse of antibacterial agents) (how safe is Triclosan?) (what is triclosan and what does it do?)

Bleach contains sodium hypochlorite. It denatures proteins and is thus quickly inactivated in high protein content (such as pus)

See (general info on bleach) or (desinfection in the house hold)

I hope this will answer your questions

Trudy Wassenaar
Curator of the Virtual Museum of Bacteria

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