Sodium Hypochlorite

  • Günter KampfEmail author


Sodium hypochlorite is mostly bactericidal at 5,000 mg/l (30 min) and yeasticidal at 1,000 mg/l (5 min). An almost comprehensive fungicidal activity was seen with 30,000 mg/l (10 min). High MIC values indicating tolerance to sodium hypochlorite have been reported for Methylobacterium spp. and R. erythropolis. Epidemiological cut-off values to determine acquired resistance have been proposed for eight species (4,100 or 8,200 mg/l active chlorine). Resistance to sodium hypochlorite is explained by genes which also involved in resistance to hydrogen peroxide. No cross-tolerance to antibiotics has been reported in S. aureus but in selected strains of Salmonella spp. In most bacterial species, there is no or only a small MIC increase after low-level exposure. Low-level exposure can induce the VBNC state in E. coli with enhanced antibiotic tolerance. Cross-tolerance can be found to benzalkonium chloride, another quaternary ammonium compound and alkylamine (L. monocytogenes) or sodium nitrite and hydrogen peroxide (E. coli). Sodium hypochlorite can increase biofilm formation in E. coli, MRSA and S. Typhimurium, whereas it is inhibited in E. faecalis and Candida spp. Biofilm removal is variable in single-species biofilms and very poor in mixed natural biofilms. The potential to cause biofilm fixation is unknown.


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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute of Hygiene and Environmental MedicineUniversity of GreifswaldGreifswaldGermany

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