Understanding Germs & Tests.
Let's break it down...
Looking at test data pages can be confusing, especially when everyone is claiming to have the most effective sanitiser product. At Nilaqua we want to help you understand, so that you can make informed decisions on what sanitiser products you want to use.
This page will help you understand
- The basics of germs
- How to decode Tests
- Understanding test results
To go straight to our test data go here.
What is a germ?
A germ is also known as a microbe. They are micro-organisms that are all around us, some are bad some are good. Dangerous germs are known as pathogens and these can cause disease. Germs are split into 6 groups: Bacteria, Fungi, Viruses, Algae, Protozoa and Archae. During this article we will mainly focus on Bacteria, Fungi and Viruses: these all cause disese.
What is a Disease?
A disease is a disorder in a human, plant or animal. Usually caused by a failure of health.
What is a spore?
A spore is a cell which can reproduce by itself. It does not need another living cell in order to germinate. Spores are how bacteria and fungi spread and grow.
If a cleaning product is 'sporicidal' and it means that the product is able to kill these spores before they develop.
The image on the right is of inactivated spores.
What is bacteria?
Top Image shows bacteria & Bottom Image is E-Coli
Bacteria is all around us and found in every location on earth. For example according to the Microbiology Society there are 10 times as many bacterial cells in our human body, than human cells in our body (shocking right?!). This is because bacteria plays a key part in the break down of various nutrients. For example as part of the season cycle, bacteria helps to decompose autumn leaves, and there are many bacteria found in our stomach lining to help breakdown our food.
So not all bacteria is bad, but the bad bacteria is known as 'pathogenic bacteria' and this can cause disease. Bacteria inside your body can turn pathogenic if you are experiencing stress and other changes in your body, such as a bad diet. Additionally, bad bacteria is more likely to grow grow on badly prepared food and places of poor hygiene.
A substance which kills bacteria is known as a 'bactericide' or the product is 'bactericidal.'
What is fungi?
There are both bad and good types of fungi. Fungi works with bacteria to play an important part in decomposition, and recycling elements like carbon. They live all around us, in nature, around our homes, mushrooms are a fungi we eat on a daily basis. They also live inside our bodies and on our skin. The amount of fungi types is in the millions, but only a few hundred make humans sick.
Fungi make humans sick through either poisoning (digestive problems and life threatening conditions), parasitic infections (yeast and skin infections) and allergic reactions (respiratory conditions.)
A substance which kills Fungi is known as a 'fungicide' or the product is 'fungicidal.'
Top Image shows branches of Penicillin (fungi) under a microscope and the bottom Image shows a yeast infection.
What is a Virus?
A virus is unique to other germs because in order to duplicate it needs to be inside a living organism, for example a human, plant or animal cell. But don't forget they can also invade fungi and bacteria cells too.
A virus is fast reproducing and due to a virus being so small, it can travel through places easily, and be contracted easily too.
If a product is effective against a virus it is known as being 'virucidal' or the product is a 'virucide.'
The top left hand image is of a Respiratory Syncytial Virus and the Bottom Image is of the Hepatitis B Virus, with DNA.
So bacteria, fungi and viruses are all types of germs.
What are common examples of these? and which does Nilaqua defend against?
Infections caused by...
- E-coli (N.T.E)
- MRSA (N.T.E)
- Salmonella (N.T.E)
- Listeria (N.T.E)
- C-difficile (N.T.E)
- Legionella (N.T.E)
- Fungal Nail Infections
- Athletes Foot
- Yeast Infections (N.T.E)
- Asthma or Allergies
- Measles (N.T.E)
- Rubella (N.T.E)
- Norovirus (N.T.E)
- Coronaviruses (N.T.E)
- HIV (N.T.E)
- HTLV (N.T.E)
- Hepatitis B (N.T.E)
*N.T.E = Nilaqua Tested Effective Against
So now you understand what germs are, let's explain the tests.
On our list of tests which Nilaqua has been proven to be effective against. you will see the code in the following layout.
BS / EN 14476
The 'BS / EN' stands for British Standard / European Norm so you know that the test which has been carried out is to British and European Standards.
The 14476 is the test code for the specific germ or test. For example, here 14476 is the test code for Norovirus.
To carry out the test, the testing house compares the difference between the number of germs in a control sample of germs, without any disinfectant, with the number of germs which remain after the specific product is used.
When looking at our test page, after the test code, you will see there is a 'test log reduction' with a number relating to each code. There are 6 logs 1-6. Log means how effective the spray is at reducing the pathogens and bacteria. The higher the log reduction number is, the more effective it is against germs. Each 1 log interval is a 10 fold reduction or moving up or down 1 decimal place.
Fold Reduction = How many times the germs have reduced by after using the product.