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


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



Replies:
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

http://www.sciam.com/explorations/072197bacteria/mirsky.html

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

See http://www.kidsource.com/health/enzyme.html

for detailed information on Triclosan Other relevant sites on this subject:

http://www.nutriteam.com/triclo.htm (a warning for overuse of antibacterial agents)

http://www.lindachae.com/triclosan.htm (how safe is Triclosan?)

http://www.madsci.org/posts/archives/jan2000/948068271.Mi.r.html (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 http://www.esemag.com/0596/bleach.html (general info on bleach) or http://www.cattlekare.alphalink.com.au/sodiumhypo.htm

http://www.bodyjam.com/germs.php3 (desinfection in the house hold)

I hope this will answer your questions

Trudy Wassenaar
Curator of the Virtual Museum of Bacteria
www.bacteriamuseum.org



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