fungi in the incubator

Stephen R. Lasky, Ph.D. Stephen_Lasky at
Mon Jul 17 09:24:36 EST 1995

In article <3u7ks5$9uu at>,
a2245094 at wrote:

> Hello everybody,
> has anybody an idea how to prevent fungi as aspergillus and so on to 
> infect your cell cultures in the incubator ?
> I have to throw away cell cultures VERY often because of different sorts 
> of them.
> Thorsten Heedt, Institute of pathology

If you don't want to gas your incubator (which may be dangerous for the
people who work in the lab) you might want to try removing all of the
trays and the racks that hold the trays up and the cover of the fan in the
top that moves air around (in other words everything on the inside of the
incubator) and wash out the incubator with a 3% chlorox solution.  Wash
and autoclave all the parts that you removed, change any external air
filters (this is important) and then start over again with a clean
incubator.  I always use a 10% SDS solution in the moistuizing water tray
(my cells aren't sensitive to this and I know labs at Harvard that make
hybridoma's that do the same, so I guess not all hydbridoma's are equally
sensitive to traces of SDS).  

You should be able to cure your incubator and not have contamination
problems again until you spill some medium in it.  If you do spill medium,
remove the trays that have been splashed and clean and autoclave them

Good luck.


Stephen R. Lasky Ph.D.  Brown University/Roger Williams Medical Center
Landline: 401-456-6572   Fax: 401-456-6569  E-Mail: Stephen_Lasky at
America may be unique in being a country which has leapt from barbarism to decadence without touching civilization.  John O'hara

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