Vodka kills germs?

Yersinia yersinia at CYBERNEX.NET
Tue Oct 7 19:28:39 EST 1997

Jim Rogers writes,

<I had a fellow student who was moth pippetting and swallowed some of a
Salmonella culture.  Rather than tell him she went home and promptly got
sick.  Her advisor, who kept vodka in his drawer (just for these
occations?) said that if she had told him, he would have given her a shot
and she would have been OK.  So this professor thought that there was
enough alcohol in vodka to do the trick.>

May I ask what school allows anyone to mouth pipette *anything,* much 
less Salmonella?? Or, is the proper question to ask, how long ago did 
this incident take place?  I began college in 1991 , and in every biology 
and chemistry lab I've ever had with experiments involving pipetting, it 
was specified repeatedly that mouth pipetting was absolutely prohibited, 
plus the labs all have signs warning of the dangers of mouth pipetting. 
But, I learned how, in 1992, when I got a job as a technician in a micro 
lab at a contract testing company - some  "old-timer" microbiologists 
worked there, they did it (even with Salmonella!), and I learned it from 
them - although I only did it for diluents and uninoculated media; 
otherwise I used a pipette pump or bulb (was I brainwashed?). Now I work 
in a pharmaceutical company and their policy on mouth pipetting is just 
like my college, only if you do it in a company lab, you can get fired, 
so I hear - I don't *think* you get expelled from college, but since I'm 
the "younger" generation  (mid-30s), I'm actually more accustomed to 
pipetting aids when it comes to precision pipetting, so I don't think 
I'll mouth pipette anything this semester just to find out.  ;-)


"Strep poker, anyone?"

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