Masters Theses


Antimicrobial activity of the volatile oxidized by-products of biogenic oil


"Fog Oil (FO), used for generating military smoke screens, is petroleum based oil and is not a renewable resource. In attempt to replace FO with biogenic oil derivative, Methyl Soyate (MS), it was found that both FO and MS vapors had antimicrobial properties. After testing different biogenic oils and their methyl ester derivatives it was found that safflower oil oxidized vapors had the highest efficacy as a disinfectant. The volatile products comprised of a complex mixture of volatile oxygenated molecules including short chain acids, aldehydes, and ketones. This mixture showed disinfectant activity against a broad spectrum of bacteria. Efficacy of components in safflower oil's vapor was tested against twenty different species of bacteria, including Mycobacterium, Staphylococcus and Streptococcus, which are related to pathogenic species. Exposure parameters were varied to determine the minimum vapor concentration needed to kill bacteria and optimize the instrument. Because oil's volatile products may have potential applications to disinfect buildings, the efficacy of the vapor was tested against bacteria in environments that simulate conditions found indoors. The vapor was tested against biofilms grown on different substrates commonly found in buildings (e.g. stainless steel, glass) and the diffusion properties were tested through materials (e.g. office paper, cloth). Under optimal parameters all bacteria species were killed within 30 minutes of exposure to the volatile products. Vapors were able to kill biofilm bacteria on all substrates within 1.5 hours. The efficiency of biofilm killing decreased with biofilm thickness. Permeability of the short chain compounds was seen through all the substrates, however, the vapor's efficacy was reduced"--Abstract, page iii.


Westenberg, David J.

Committee Member(s)

Kapila, Shubhender
Mormile, Melanie R.


Biological Sciences

Degree Name

M.S. in Applied and Environmental Biology


Missouri University of Science and Technology

Publication Date

Fall 2009

Note about bibliography

Includes bibliographical references.


© 2009 Karissa Braaten, All rights reserved.

Document Type

Thesis - Citation

File Type




Subject Headings

Anti-infective agents -- Bioavailability
Disinfection and disinfectants
Pathogenic bacteria
Safflower oil

Thesis Number

T 9569

Print OCLC #


Link to Catalog Record

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