Index Home About Blog
From: B. Harris)
Subject: Re: Do Bacteria Have Odors?
Date: 7 Aug 1998 05:06:39 GMT

In <6qdbfu$> (Don Montgomery)

>I think this was mentioned about ten years back on this group, but I
>don't recall the thread.
>Do germs have odors?  Can one smell staph, strept and some of the other
>common bacteria if they exist in large quantity?  If so, do we smell
>them directly or their byproducts?  I'm not talking about odor caused
>by bacterial breakdown of tissue, etc.

   Some bacteria make strong odors.  Some anaerobes smell perfectly
putrid, and an openened culture container can make everyone in a whole
building puke, or want to.  Other aerobic bacteria have identifiable
but less objectionable odors.   Pseudomonas smells a bit like fresh
corn torteas.  Most bacteria are odorless.  Or their culture media, at
least, smells more strongly (even though most augars and broths smell
only faintly).

                                      Steve Harris, M.D.

Index Home About Blog