Investigations of Bacterial Inactivation and DNA Fragmentation Induced by Flowing Humid Argon Post-discharge

  • Emmanuel OdicEmail author
  • S. Limam
  • M. J. Kirkpatrick
  • B. Dodet
  • S. Salamitou
  • M. S. DuBow
Conference paper
Part of the NATO Science for Peace and Security Series A: Chemistry and Biology book series (NAPSA)


Bio-contaminated surfaces were exposed to an atmospheric pressure flowing post-discharge, i.e. without direct contact of the plasma with the surface. The non-thermal plasma source was a dielectric barrier discharge. Using humid argon as a feed gas, a reduction of six orders of magnitude of survivors could be obtained for Escherichia coli. An investigation of bacterial inactivation mechanisms during the plasma induced treatment was conducted. For this purpose, DNA (plasmid and genomic DNA in aqueous solution) degradation by the plasma process was studied, assuming that the bacterial inactivation is obtained when the bacterial DNA is fragmented. According to the operating conditions (feed gas, reactor geometry and discharge input power), DNA fragmentation was evaluated in correlation with aqueous phase hydrogen peroxide concentration measurements. It appears that hydrogen peroxide is not the only factor responsible for DNA fragmentation and that short-lived species produced by water dissociation are major contributors.


Input Power Plasma Treatment Dielectric Barrier Discharge Water Vapor Content Water Dissociation 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


  1. 1.
    Lee HW, Park GY, Seo YS, Im YH, Shim SB, Lee HJ (2011) Modelling of atmospheric ­pressure plasmas for biomedical applications. J Phys D Appl Phys 44:053001 (27pp)ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    Kong MG, Groesen G, Morfill G, Nosenko T, Shimizu T, van Dijk J, Zimmermann JL (2009) Plasma medicine: an introductory review. New J Phys 11:115012CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    Laroussi M (2009) Low-temperature plasmas for medicine? IEEE Trans Plasma Sci 37(6)Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Boudam MK, Saoudi B, Moisan M, Ricard A (2007) Characterization of the flowing afterglows of an N2-O2 reduced pressure discharge: setting the operating conditions to achieve a dominant late afterglow and correlating the NOβ UV intensity variation with the N and O atom densities. J Phys D: Appl Phys 40:1694ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Sarrette J-P, Cousty S, Merbahi N, Nègre-Salvayr A, Clément F (2010) Observation of ­antibacterial effects obtained at atmospheric and reduced pressures in afterglow conditions. Eur Phys J Appl Phys 49:13108ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    Villeger S, Cousty S, Ricard A, Sixou M (2003) Sterilization of E. Coli bacterium in a flowing N2-O2 post-discharge reactor. J Phys D: Appl Phys 36:60–62ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    Kamgang-Youbi G, Herry J-M, Meylheuc T, Brisset J-L, Bellon-Fontaine M-N, Doubla A, Naitali M (2009) Microbial inactivation using plasma-activated water obtained by gliding electric discharges. Lett Appl Microbiol 48(1):13–18CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    Pointu AM, Ricard A, Odic E, Ganciu M (2008) Nitrogen atmospheric pressure post discharges for surface biological decontamination inside small diameter tubes. Plasma Processes Polym 5(6):559CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    Oehmigen K, Hähnel M, Brandenburg R, Wilke Ch, Weltmann K-D, von Woedtke Th (2010) The role of acidification for antimicrobial activity of atmospheric pressure plasma in liquids. Plasma Processes Polym Special Issue: Plasma Medicine 7(3–4):250–257CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. 10.
    Rahman M, Tanino M, Hashimoto M, Nakano M, Yasuda H, Takashima K, Mizuno A (2008) Fundamental study on quasi-real-time detection of airborne bio-particles using discharge plasma. Thin Solid Films 516:6699–6703ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. 11.
    Yasuda H, Miura T, Kurita H, Takashima K, Mizuno A (2010) Biological evaluation of DNA damage in bacteriophages inactivated by atmospheric pressure cold plasma. Plasma Processes Polym Special Issue: Plasma Medicine 7(3–4):301–308CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    Hibert C, Gaurand I, Motret O, Pouvesle JM (1999) [OH(X)] measurements by resonant absorption spectroscopy in a pulsed dielectric barrier discharge. J Appl Phys 85(10):7070ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. 13.
    Kirkpatrick MJ, Dodet B, Odic E (2007) Atmospheric pressure humid argon DBD plasma for the application of sterilization – measurement and simulation of hydrogen, oxygen, and hydrogen peroxide formation. Int J Plasma Environ Sci Technol 1(1):96–101Google Scholar
  14. 14.
    Dodet B, Odic E, Goldman A, Goldman M, Renard D (2005) Hydrogen peroxide formation by discharges in argon/water vapor mixtures at atmospheric pressure. J Adv Oxid Technol 8(1):91–97Google Scholar
  15. 15.
    Dong B, Bauchire JM, Pouvesle JM, Magnier P, Hong D (2008) Experimental study of a DBD surface discharge for the active control of subsonic airflow. J Phys D: Appl Phys 41:155201ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Emmanuel Odic
    • 1
    Email author
  • S. Limam
    • 1
  • M. J. Kirkpatrick
    • 1
  • B. Dodet
    • 1
  • S. Salamitou
    • 2
  • M. S. DuBow
    • 2
  1. 1.E3S – Department of Power and Energy SystemsSUPELECGif-sur-Yvette CedexFrance
  2. 2.Institut de Génétique et MicrobiologieUniversité Paris-Sud 11OrsayFrance

Personalised recommendations