Is 70% Isopropyl Alcohol better at killing bacteria and viruses than 90% isopropyl alcohol?
The United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) did a research on disinfecting and sanitizing methods and published the Guideline for Disinfection and Sterilization in Healthcare Facilities.
70% isopropyl alcohol can cross over the cell membrane more effectively, thereby attacking the entire cell and killing the bacteria (CDC, 2020).
Benefits of 70% isopropyl alcohol: –
- Coagulation of surface proteins proceeds at a slower rate, thereby allowing the alcohol to enter the cell.
- 70% alcohol, being a dilution of absolute alcohol, contains water which is essential in the denaturing process of proteins.
- Due to the concentration difference of water and alcohol on either side of the cell wall, 70% alcohol enters the cell to denature both enzymatic and structural proteins. This increases the potency of its antimicrobial properties.
The CDC recommends 70% for disinfecting one’s household and routine cleaning (CDC, 2020).