One of the really common types of prepared culture media is prepared agar plates. Since agar is mostly used in laboratories, this polymer has an interesting history and is beneficial beyond the scientific community as well. But what are things that you should be aware of while using agar plates?
How Can You Tell If Your Agar Plate Is Safe?
Just before a fresh batch of ready to use agar plates can be utilised, it must be thoroughly evaluated for viability, especially under pharmaceutical industry rules. This is accomplished by growth promotion testing (GPT). The goal of GPT is to ensure that a new batch of agar has excellent nutritional characteristics by challenging it with a small number of bacteria. However, this method is fraught with difficulties.
Non-growth or limited recovery of particular bacteria is a common complaint. If you encounter this difficulty, it is recommended that you first retest using a freshly created control strain to exclude the chance of a control fault and to prevent the need to make a whole new batch.
Not All Agar Should Be Kept In The Refrigerator
In terms of storage, some consumers will inadvertently store dishes in the refrigerator. This is due to the fact that the media used in this industry contains components that decay quickly, demanding refrigeration to extend the shelf life. Researchers can make the obvious error of refrigerating media needlessly out of routine or just because the manufacturer has changed and they are unfamiliar with the storage needs of the media.
Since the shelf life of your media is determined by appropriate storage parameters, working beyond this criterion may jeopardize your testing!
How To Handle Sterility Issues?
If you choose non-selective media, you may notice infected colonies on fresh media at the end of its shelf life. This is attributable to the fact that agar plates are manufactured aseptic conditions rather than completely sterilised.
Despite tight measures, no manufacturer of agar plates can ensure that fresh plates are completely sterile. Microbes are rare and agitated in the environment where the plates are crowded and packed, as it is a challenging setting for their survival. Anything else that makes it into the medium will either perish before it can grow or take several weeks to do so. It’s much more likely, though, that media that displays growth towards the conclusion of long shelf life has become contaminated as a result of packaging failure during processing.
If you find contaminating colonies on your unopened plate packs or after opening them, a reputable supplier will always end up replacing your media. Once a plate pack is opened, unfortunately, your manufacturer or supplier cannot be held liable for any contamination that was not identified right away.
If you wish to learn more about prepared culture media, please contact Advancells Diagnostics at [email protected] for more information