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Author: Subject: Can I use table salt to make nutrient broth?
Carbon8
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[*] posted on 12-2-2019 at 13:36
Can I use table salt to make nutrient broth?


Morton table salt contains a small amount of calcium silicate as an anti-caking agent. Will this interfere when making nutrient broth to grow bacteria?

And if it does, are there any convenient ways to purify the salt? Wikipedia and the CDC say calcium silicate has a solubility in water of 0.01% at 20C. I'm thinking of dissolving table salt in distilled water, chilling the water, filtering the solution to trap some of the silicate, spinning the filtrate in a centrifuge to sediment any remaining silicate and then decanting the solution and maybe recrystallizing it.

Will this work? Is there an easier way?

Also, is there a special name for what remains on the filter when something is filtered?

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MrHomeScientist
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[*] posted on 12-2-2019 at 14:22


Seems unnecessary, but then again I don't know anything about bacteria. The amount of other chemicals in table salt is miniscule. If you want to be sure, you can follow the procedure you suggested. Personally, dissolving and filtering off insolubles at room temperature, and then crystallizing the salt is plenty pure for me.

A quick googling suggests that "filtride" covers the solids and filtrate is the liquids, although I've never heard anyone use the term filtride before.

[Edited on 2-12-2019 by MrHomeScientist]
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morganbw
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[*] posted on 12-2-2019 at 16:03


Perhaps if it could be used as an antibiotic if that is determined to be the case.

Big industry involved trying to determine how to destroy bacteria.
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j_sum1
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[*] posted on 12-2-2019 at 16:05


Quote: Originally posted by Carbon8  


Also, is there a special name for what remains on the filter when something is filtered?


IME, most people use the terms "filter cake" or "residue".
Filtride is actually a pretty good name. I might start using it.
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CharlieA
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[*] posted on 12-2-2019 at 18:05


For the solid remaining on the filter, I have seen the terms filtrand, and (a nod to j_sum 1) filter cake or residue. I have never seen the term filtride before, but one can always learn something new.
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Tsjerk
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[*] posted on 13-2-2019 at 08:03


Bacteria will be fine with table salt, no need to purify. A bit of calcium will be there anyway and I don't see how silicate would intefer.

What species are you growing?

[Edited on 13-2-2019 by Tsjerk]
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Carbon8
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[*] posted on 13-2-2019 at 11:18


Thanks to all for their comments.

I'm preparing to grow E. coli strain BL21, which contains a plasmid that codes for luminescence proteins. Here's a link:

http://www.the-odin.com/plasmid-pje202-pvib-to-create-biolum...
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Tsjerk
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[*] posted on 13-2-2019 at 12:49


Nice one!

Are you using ampicillin? It helps to keep the coli maintain the plasmid. Not necessary persé, but if you can I would do it. Most important though is that it keeps contaminations out if you are re-streaking your strain.

Coli can definitely handle a bit of anti-caking agent.
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Carbon8
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[*] posted on 15-2-2019 at 14:15


Tsjerk, thanks for the tip. I didn't buy ampicillin, but I have some amoxicillin from a old prescription that I'll try instead.
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