A systematic investigation of the lethal effect of high frequency electric fields on staphylococcus aureus
Grininger, Donn Robert
McEnany, M. V.
Master of Science
A suitable oscillator was designed and constructed to supply the high frequency electric power used In the course of this investigation,. A combination cooler and condenser was used to expose the organisms to the high frequency electric field and also to control the temperature of the organisms during their exposure to the electric field. An expedient method was necessary to determine the concentration of cells within the medium in which they were suspended. Such a method was devised based on the relative opacity to light of these suspensions and aqueous solutions of barium sulfate. The lethal effect of the high frequency electric field on the bacteria was determined by measuring their ability to reproduce after exposure to the electric field. Variable frequency tests sere performed on Staphylococcus aureus using a constant electric intensity within the nutrient broth in which the organisms were suspended# The frequency of maximum destruction of the bacteria was determined and another series of tests were performed using this frequency and various values of electric intensity within the bacterial suspensions. The high frequency electric field had a lethal effect on these organisms and this effect was a linear function of time. Also the destruction of the organisms Increases with an increase of electric intensity within the medium in which they are suspended and there appears to be a minimum value of electric intensity which will have a lethal effect on the organisms. Extensive research is necessary in order to draw any definite conclusions as to the exact nature of the lethal effect of high frequency electric fields on bacteria. It is believed that further systematic investigation in this field is warranted.