WASHINGTON, DCFebruary 25, 2014 The active ingredient in vinegar, acetic acid, can effectively kill mycobacteria, even highly drug-resistant Mycobacterium tuberculosis, an international team of researchers from Venezuela, France, and the US reports in mBio, the online open-access journal of the American Society for Microbiology.
Acetic acid might be used as an inexpensive and non-toxic disinfectant against drug-resistant tuberculosis (TB) bacteria as well as other stubborn, disinfectant-resistant mycobacteria.
Work with drug-resistant tuberculosis bacteria carries serious biohazard risks. Chlorine bleach is often used to disinfect TB cultures and clinical samples, but bleach is toxic and corrosive. Other effective commercial disinfectants can be too expensive for TB labs in the resource-poor countries where the majority of TB occurs.