Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

How can I store swabbed samples for later use?

  1. Aug 23, 2012 #1

    I wondering how I could go about storing a sterile swab of of desk or surface so I could later transfer it to a Petri dish.

    Is it sufficient enough to just stick the cotton swab back in the sterile paper it came with or must I do something different?
  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 23, 2012 #2
    Autoclaved test tube with parafilm and stick it in a fridge? Once you open the sterile paper, it's not really sterile anymore. I think that's your safest bet.
  4. Aug 23, 2012 #3
    What about if I am on the go and there is no refrigeration available?

    Thank for the response!
  5. Aug 24, 2012 #4
    I think that would depend on how long "later" is, but they'd probably be fine sealed that way at room temperature. From what I've read, some nitrifying bacteria can last 10 weeks without ammonium.


    Bacteria are pretty hardy and they'd probably go into stasis and be just fine. Fungal spores would last quite a long time, too.

    You could seal the swab tips in Eppendorf tubes instead of test tubes, too.
Share this great discussion with others via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook