Issue Date: November 17, 2008
Bleach Kills Bacteria On Multiple Fronts
The battle between bleach and bacteria is unequal, and two research groups think they have discovered some reasons why. People use hypochlorous acid (HOCl), the active ingredient in bleach, to rid their homes of bacteria. Immune cells in mammals carry out their own version of this housekeeping by engulfing invading bacteria and killing them with HOCl. Melanie S. A. Coker of the University of Otago, in Christchurch, New Zealand, and colleagues propose that HOCl . . .
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