high pressure sterilization

mccardaj at esvx17.es.dupont.com mccardaj at esvx17.es.dupont.com
Thu Sep 22 08:38:37 EST 1994

I am doing some work using high pressure with ambient temperature for sterilizatliz
ation purposes.  Does anyone know how high pressure kills bacteria?

My original thought was that the water within the cell is highly compressed and then when the pressure is brought back down to atmospheri
and then when the pressure is brought back down to atmospheric, it expands
with a great deal of energy tearing apart the cell.

I also thought that the cell may be under some osmotic stress.  Also,
what about the water undergoing a phase change at high pressure and thus
acting like a non-polar solvent?

My observations have been that after high pressure treatment, the turbid 
innoculum still appears turbid.  I would expect a clearing of the innoculum
if the cells had actually been lysed.  I have not looked at the cells under
a scope yet but plan to after our next run.  

I would appreciate any discussion on the mechanism and of course if
anyone has any good references/review articles to suggest I would be
grateful.  I am totally new to this field and could definitely use some

A.J. McCardell

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