Microbial containment in conventional fermentation processes.
Martinez-KF; Sheehy-JW; Jones-JH; Cusick-LB
Appl Ind Hyg 1988 Jun; 3(6):177-181
Engineering controls in conventional enzyme fermentation operations were evaluated to identify effective controls applicable to processes involving microorganisms. Walk through surveys were conducted at six fermentation facilities, with in/depth surveys conducted at three of the sites. The various control measures were evaluated by collecting environmental air samples for the microorganisms involved in the manufacturing processes. Bioaerosol samples were collected from potential emission sites (laboratory, seed tank, fermentor tank) using a cascade impactor; factory production strain was identified using a standardized microbiological test method combined with a sugar utilization profile. Degree of microbial containment was assessed by comparing sample concentrations around unit processes to background. Results indicated that controls were most needed around high energy operations (filtering operations, agitator shafts, sampling ports) where aerosolization was likely to occur; operator work practices contributed to the degree of microbial exposure during certain operations. The authors conclude that an effective microbial containment strategy should emphasize containment within a sealed system through engineering and appropriate work practices; monitoring and the use of personal protective equipment is also advised.
NIOSH-Author; Workplace-studies; Air-quality-control; Microbiology; Control-methods; Work-practices; Air-contamination; Employee-exposure
Applied Industrial Hygiene