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Vinegar found to kill drug resistant bacteria

Vinegar has been found to be an effective and nontoxic killer of drug resistant bacteria and common bacteria that produce a health hazard particularly in developing nation’s hospitals and clinics according to a report in the Feb. 25. 2014, edition of the journal mBio® by an international team of researchers including Howard Takiff, head of the Laboratory of Molecular Genetics at the Venezuelan Institute of Scientific Investigation (IVIC) in Caracas, and Catherine Vilchèze and William Jacobs, Jr. at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York.

Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) (R) speaks as Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT) looks on during a press conference to introduce legislation addressing drug-resistant staph infections.
Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) (R) speaks as Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT) looks on during a press conference to introduce legislation addressing drug-resistant staph infections.
Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images
Annual number of new reported TB cases.
TimVickers This work has been released into the public domain by its author.

A six percent solution of vinegar in water applied to instruments and medical care unit surfaces for 30 minutes was found to kill the bacteria that cause tuberculosis and leprosy and even to kill the drug resistant tuberculosis mycobacteria. A 10 percent solution of vinegar applied for 30 minutes produced a bacteria count that was not detectable by the most modern methods.

The importance of the discovery is prevention of the spread of disease, cost, and efficacy. Most developing countries cannot afford the equipment or chemicals to prevent the spread of bacteria that cause tuberculosis, leprosy, and other diseases. More developed countries have fought a continuing and losing struggle against drug resistant bacteria.

The active ingredient in vinegar is acetic acid. One hundred dollars can purchase enough acetic acid to prevent the potential spread of disease in poor nation’s hospitals and clinics without any toxic side effects.