What do biocides and antibiotics have in common? Their common goal is it, kill for humans dangerous microorganisms. We already know from school lessons, that the survival of a species closely related to their adaptability is.
What is the distance between two human generations? At present the researchers go out at the woman of 29 Years and the mans of 33 years.
In microorganisms of the generational distance is in the range of a few hours. Match big is the chance of microorganisms, to adapt to changed conditions through mutations. The use of antibiotics leads more frequently to develop resistance in microorganisms.
The situation is similar in some biocides. We are in a spiral. The resistance forces us to develop ever more effective antibiotics.
The concept of probiotic displacement takes a different approach: WITH microorganisms living instead of believing, that you can destroy them. One should be aware of: Bacteria belong to humans!
So far it was assumed, that the microorganisms are mainly responsible for the defense outwardly. No, they do something for our immune system. For example, the human skin, it is colonized by bacteria. Only live on the surface of the skin 100 to 10.000 Microorganisms, that benefit the people usually. The few, the harm to humans, hide in between and are masters in camouflage. With the deadly chemicals we hurt all good microorganisms to combat a few harmful.
A microorganism or microbe is an organism, which is too small, to see it with the naked eye. Microorganisms become visible only under the microscope or in the large group, usually called "colony". The most known microorganisms are viruses, bacteria, fungus, yeasts and algae. Bacteria are the most common and are approximately 1 Micrometers. This corresponds to a thousandth of a millimeter.
Microorganisms are usually useful. They take care of human digestion or help with composting. Even in the production of food they are used. Nevertheless, one must not forget, that there are also harmful, so-called pathogenic, microorganisms. They may be directly or indirectly responsible for diseases. But even on the harmful microorganisms, the human immune system is established. The difference is the strength of the immune system and the number of attackers.
The biofilm as a community of microorganisms
Microorganisms work perfectly together, to ensure their survival. The first traces of microorganisms on Earth are already 3 Billion years old, so they have much more survival-experience as a human. All over, where microorganisms occur, organize them into a community: microflora.
These communities can be very different and very complex. Each micro-organism species has its specific task and contributes to the community. Together they pursue only one goal: as long as possible as a community to survive. The multiplication always takes place in the speed, allowed by the food resources. Even a safety margin is left free so as not to fall as a group in an undersupply. One might think, Microorganisms are better organized than a modern state.
If a microbial community or microflora present on a solid base (tubes, containers, Material), this is called a biofilm. A well-known and visible example of a biofilm are the black joints in a shower.
A biofilm consists of many different types of micro-organisms and substances, they produce themselves. These substances can be used as food or as a protective layer.
So the microorganisms build something like a house, to protect itself and to live together in. Unfortunately, a biofilm for us often has negative consequences: It causes visual pollution, unpleasant odors and provides an ideal environment for many pathogens. What a biofilm needs to survive?
Three conditions for survival:
Like all living microorganisms cannot survive without food. This food can be very different and of course microscopic. Important food sources include sugar, fats and proteins, but also specific culture media such as urine or sweat. Not all microorganisms can utilize all the nutrients. Therefore, they work together in the biofilm, the nutrients exchange among themselves.
In addition, one can (Micro-)not survive organisms, without drinking. Microorganisms cannot really drink, they absorb fluid from the environment. One could compare it with a sponge, which water soaks. If insufficient fluid is present, decreases their activity quickly. As animals and humans, microorganisms live much longer without food than without liquid. Moisture is very important.
In order to survive, the environment must also be favorable. With the biofilm microorganisms protect somewhat against fluctuations in the area, such as temperature, acidity and moisture.
Conventional chemical disinfection and cleaning
Since the discovery of microorganisms was associated mainly with diseases, thought people, that all microorganisms are dangerous. Besides the search for disease-fighting equipment (antibiotics) and the hygiene of ourselves and our environment has become increasingly more attention. For this purpose, cleaners and disinfectants were developed.
There is an important difference between cleaning and disinfecting, both on a surface and on the human body.
The removal of dirt from a surface. This can be a material or substance. The cleaning is done in this application with soaps or detergents, the soap-free cleanser.
With operations of cleaning and the targeted release of the biofilm in pipelines is meant too, because the biofilm itself is the basis for the development of micro-organisms. There are studies, in which water velocities can be detached biofilms. These speeds are far greater be achieved in an economic pipeline system and should.
Disinfection is the removal of microorganisms from a surface by killing. This is done with biocides or disinfectants. Both soaps and biocides have a purely chemical composition, wherein the biocides contain an active ingredient, which kills the microorganisms. Soaps and biocides are often combined, whereby a single product is obtained in both a cleansing as well as killing effect. The ultimate aim is therefore, to ensure use of cleaning and disinfection, that microorganisms and their breeding ground (Contamination of surface) no longer occur in the surroundings.
The resistance problem
The use of detergents and disinfectants initially had the desired effect and it was quite easy to remove dirt and microorganisms from a surface. As mentioned above, there are micro-organisms for a long time. In that time, they have learned, to adapt to changes in their environment very quickly. A few decades after the introduction of disinfectants the microorganisms found ways, to circumvent this threat: the so-called resistance.
That means, that microorganisms are always better able, to survive an "attack" with disinfectants. therefore, disinfectants act less and less. Even with the cleaning agents, there are a growing problem. One of the defense mechanisms of the microorganisms to these chemical attacks is the formation of more and more stubborn biofilms. This has the consequence, that the detergent cannot remove efficiently surfaces pollution, because it is stuck more often in biofilms, which are almost impenetrable for soaps.
Microorganisms have also learned, to penetrate materials. Some components of plastics can be used for example as food. Silicone is an inorganic material. But the additions for better quality or even the moisten with detergent finger-joint plumber can keep, that a biofilm in the silicone can eat well.
Quote VDI 2047 sheet 2 “Ensuring the hygienic operation of evaporative cooling equipment” Paragraph 22.214.171.124.1: When using biocides for the control of microorganisms in the circulating water, compliance with the use concentrations and contact times are essential. Due to lack of concentration or time of impact there may be formation of resistance and adaptation. (…) Important note 1: When using non-oxidizing biocides, the active ingredient must be changed quarterly, to prevent resistance. In further evidence of existing effectiveness of the interval can be extended.
The disinfection paradox
The chemical disinfection is associated with an additional risk. The disinfection effect on the microbial dynamics, so that the biofilm is always more and more harmful. What happens in a chemical disinfection?
In the above example, we assume the same surface, the sufficient food, liquid and space offers, to a microbial community with a maximum 100 microorganisms keeping alive. The biofilm is in balance.
With the Disinfection the number of micro-organisms drops significantly. The vacancies have increased. By the resistance some microorganisms, however, survive the disinfection.
Disinfection by definition is the reduction of "colony forming units" to 10-5. This means, from 10.000 CFU organisms remains one organism left. 10 Organisms survive disinfection if previously 100.000 CFU were present. The unit CFU is used in microbiology, because individual microorganisms can be counted very badly.
A disinfectant effect, if it is not always present, not. Therefore, the surviving organisms will begin after a few minutes, spread again. Because suddenly the vacant spaces of the killed microorganisms available.
Also food, the killed microorganisms themselves serve as food source, and fluid is again available.
Because resistant harmful germs best survive a disinfection attack and therefore spread rapidly again, every single disinfection will result in a biofilm with more and more resistant harmful germs. Even now, this new biofilm will stabilize and, through a safety margin for, that not all spaces are taken, to survive as long as possible.
The disinfection paradox is, that according to some disinfection operations, the self-renewing microbial community will include more and more harmful germs!
The operation of the probiotic displacement
Some specialized in biotechnology companies have developed solutions, those based on specific bacteria, the "probiotic bacteria", work. A subset of these bacteria, but not the same, is known from advertising the food industry. These probiotic bacteria are used, to form a healthy biofilm and maintain.
At least one company has developed a range of probiotic liquids, leaving a thin layer of "good" microorganisms on the surface during and after use. The reality is three-dimensional, for explaining the 2-dimensional example is used again.
The microbial community makes through its own dynamics for displacement. the biofilm is in balance, the vacancies are by the probiotic bacteria occupied. These may be the places of the safety margin. But it can also be places, which made free with a conventional chemical disinfection. The probiotics do not kill or replace other microorganisms, there are only good microorganisms from probiotics added. Due to the natural regeneration of the microorganisms bad bacteria are slowly but surely by probiotic bacteria repressed.
The benefits of probiotic displacement
By far the most important benefit of probiotic displacement is the formation of a healthy microflora, which remains stable and healthy, as long as the probiotic displacement is applied.
Microorganisms can not be resistant to other microorganisms, only to chemical substances, that threaten them. At a probiotic displacement there is no killing chemical substances and therefore no resistance.
The safety of probiotic bacteria in the application and storage depends on the supplier. At least one manufacturer, states that the probiotics used have been tested internationally for use in foods and are also being tested.
Microbial transmission is then dangerous, when people and animals come into contact. That's why many people find such places "dirty". Ultimately, it is a microbially highly contaminated area.
One might think, disinfection is inevitable. The cleaning is done in these cases better by probiotic displacement as with the chemical mace.
The probiotic displacement works with less effort. It's not necessary, to monitor limits. This eliminates the cost of a significant measuring technology.
Probiotic bacteria are not only 100% naturally, but also support the water treatment in biological treatment plants.
The application of probiotic bacteria
A standard treatment with probiotic bacteria does not exist. Just like any water treatment, it is important, that is carried out an analysis of the precise conditions and problems. Only with analyses one strategy can be created.
Basically, you must be aware of when evaluating, that you can work exclusively against microorganisms. Adverse small animals are not usually prevented.
Minimum number of probiotic bacteria
Of course, you need depending on the application, a minimum number of good bacteria in the product, to develop the effect. If you use too little probiotics, it will be much longer or not be successful, to achieve an effect. For efficiency, it is important, that can be used with high concentrations of probiotic bacteria. At least one manufacturer now reached a shelf life of 2 years.
The used probiotics should be taken from the naturally occurring bacteria of our environment and bred. Compared to some kind of chemical disinfection incurred in probiotic displacement of naturally significant benefits in terms of environmental compatibility and safety.
Safety and environmental sustainability are, unlike many chemical cleaners and disinfectants, the particularly large additional benefits of probiotic products.
Frequently biocides are used, to reduce the microorganisms. If the manufacturer of the biocides has given the so-called "recipe" known, this formula must be reconciled with the conditions of use and the material compatibility.
In addition, the by-products and emerging whose emissions are to be observed.
Currently, there are many conventional chemical biocides to the test of the European Union. Who chemical biocides used, should be based at least on the "list of old drugs" and not use "secret mixtures".
Dirt and biofilm
Whether it's process water, ponds or natural waters, each water system displays after a short time an accumulation of organic materials, and dead microbiology. These deposits clog pipes, Filter, pumps or change the depth of the water. In addition, there is a food source for microorganisms, which then in turn provide for additional organic material. Sunlight, heat or oxygen often provide an extra boost in the development of organic dirt and biofilm. The probiotics were selected with the aim and selected, to process the organic deposits and they primarily in CO2 to transform. In this way, the water system can be cleaned in a natural way. The composition of the probiotics should be tuned, that they build their full activity in a wide range of temperature and pH.
This makes the use in many water systems possible.
The organic dirt, which collects in the water, begins to rot, because certain microorganisms take up this dirt as food and volatile in malodorous gases, mostly sulfur compounds, convert. Practically all non-chemically treated water systems with an increased content of organic substances suffer from such an odor. The smell can sometimes be so strong, that the environment is affected or that finished products contain an undesirable odor.
An example is the smell of butyric acid in cardboard and paper. Since the probiotic bacteria actively processing organic materials and convert it into odorless compounds, the smell is drastically reduced. The competition of probiotic bacteria with their natural environment for nutrients creates a reduced risk for the presence or activity of odoriferous microorganisms.
A major problem in water systems, the growth of undesirable microorganisms, such as algae or cyanobacteria. It is not just a visual problem, but it can also be a danger to the health of humans and animals. Even if a biofilm having similar characteristics of heat transfer, such as water, is the biofilm can significantly degrade the efficiency of heat exchangers, the water velocity at the surface is set to zero.
Examples of water treatment Cooling towers
Many industrial plants use water mainly for cooling and rinsing in their production processes. Such process water is extremely strong organic load and is precisely for this reason reused very long, to avoid high costs for wastewater. Heavy biofilm formation and strong odors very common in industrial process waters and cause major problems for the environment and the effectiveness.
If these pools be kept outside the obligation to disinfection.
More and more people buy a hot whirlpool as an alternative to an expensive and space-consuming Pool. In addition, many bathrooms are equipped the house with a whirlpool function. The many pipes and pumps in a hot tub, however, are difficult to clean, and very fast organic matter accumulates there and form a biofilm. If the system is rarely in operation occurs very quickly, an unpleasant odor.
The manufacturers of the pools secure themselves with the instruction manual and request, in addition to any existing UV radiation, often the use of chemical disinfectants chlorine- or bromine-based. The usual byproducts are concealed and can cause human skin irritation. Overdoses or non-expert handling may damage the equipment of the pool. Is advantageous, that the probiotic bacteria up to a week reverberate.
Water treatment in fish farming
Even with larger quantities of water and the water quality is often problematic. Swimming ponds, golf ponds or even entire lakes often suffer from excessive microbial activity due to the pollution of water with organic compounds, Nitrogen or phosphates. Often Agriculture, industry and overpopulation the cause. Here, fish and other form in and around the water live animals no obstacle to the use of probiotic bacteria.
Because each volume of water has its own situation and problems, this situation has to be analyzed, to find the most suitable probiotic bacteria. The way of application, the combination with other methods, such as ventilation or filtering, and the observations of the local condition, must be combined by the supplier with probiotic bacteria to a concept. This concept needs to be frequently checked against the effect and adjusted after some time.
Hygiene and surfaces
According to the manufacturer's instructions to reduce pathogenic bacteria by up to be 89% more to chemical disinfection possible and proven.
After applying natural probiotic bacteria occupy the surfaces and leave pathogens no room and food, This retreat to the dominance principle. There is no additional resistance.