BIOL 2420 – Importance of Hand Hygiene Assignment
Experiment 1: Importance of Hand Hygiene
Microorganisms are tiny, typically only microns in length–much too small to be seen without a microscope. Our bodies harbor bacteria that do not normally cause any disease (that is, they are not pathogenic), but they can cause disease if transmitted to a person with an impaired immune system. Since they are so small, it is difficult to know whether we have bacteria on our hands that we could easily transfer to another person by direct contact (e.g., by shaking their hand) or indirectly (e.g., by touching a counter top which someone else then touches). In this experiment, you will assess how easy it is to transfer a microorganism with your hands, and how to prevent this transmission by hand washing. Baking yeast (Saccharomyces cerevisiae) is a unicellular microorganism that does not cause disease but is an effective model for how microorganisms can be easily transferred.
Table 2: Experiment 1 Colony Growth
Plate # Condition Growth
1 Water minus hand washing
2 Water plus hand washing
3 Yeast minus hand washing
4 Yeast plus hand washing
The following post-lab questions should be answered in complete sentences, IN YOUR OWN WORDS. Be sure to answer each question that is asked to receive full credit.
1. a. What are the types of personal protective equipment?
b. When should personal protective equipment be worn?
c. Why is personal protective equipment important?
2. a. What are the four levels of biological containment and what types of microbes would each level be used for?
b. What level of biological containment will be necessary to complete the experiments in this manual?
3. What document should you refer to if you have questions regarding the safety or disposal of a chemical? Where can this document be located?
4. List five safety procedures that should always be adhered to when working with microorganisms.
5. a. Compare the petri dish condition(s) that grew the most colonies with the condition(s) that grew the fewest colonies.
b. What difference, if any, between handwashing vs. no handwashing can you conclude from these results?
c. Was your handwashing technique effective or not, why or why not?
d. If your results were not effective, what might you to do change your results if you were repeating this experiment?
Insert a photo of your plates in the table below. Place the plates on a sheet of paper with your signature and the date the photo was taken written clearly on the paper.
Plates 1-4 and Control BIOL 2420 – Importance of Hand Hygiene Assignment.
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