bubbles and agar plates

John Rebers jrebers at nmu.edu
Tue Jul 17 11:15:40 EST 2001


Occasionally I have problems with agar plates used for growing bacteria
with small bubbles (2-3 mm in diameter) appearing between the plate and the
agar medium. These are not on the surface of the plate or within the agar
itself, but are air bubbles at the bottom of the plate between the medium
and the agar. The bubbles are invisible at room temperature, but expand
significantly when the plates are incubated at 37C. They are sometimes
abundant enough to make it more difficult to distinguish colonies on the
plate surface. Since they only show up some of the time, I suspect this has
something to do with the way the plates are poured - the temperature of the
medium, perhaps. Has anyone else seen these and figure out how to avoid them?

Thanks,

John E. Rebers
Department of Biology
Northern Michigan University
1401 Presque Isle Avenue
Marquette, MI  49855

jrebers at nmu.edu
906-227-1585; 906-227-1063 (FAX)

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