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Unformatted text preview: three hours may be required for destruction of bacterial spores. In moist heat, the microbial proteins undergo denaturation , a process in which the three-dimensional form of the protein reverts to a two-dimensional form, and the protein breaks down. Moist heat is used in the autoclave , a high-pressure device in which steam is superheated (Figure 1 ). Steam at 100C is placed under a pressure of 15 pounds per square inch, increasing the temperature to 121C. At this temperature, the time required to achieve sterilization is about 15 minutes. The autoclave is the standard instrument for preparing microbial media and for sterilizing instruments such as syringes, hospital garb, blankets, intravenous solutions, and myriad other items....
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- Fall '07