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The Effects of Colloidal Silver on Microbial Growth: Investigating Snake Oil Science

Colloidal Silver
Science and Society
Education Level
High School

In this investigation, students will explore the validity of purported claims that colloidal silver, generated by means of direct electric current (DC), when added to nutrient agar and exposed to bacterial and fungal cultures is an effective method for inhibiting microbial growth.  Is colloidal silver being touted as an antimicrobial agent, or is it truly the “silver bullet” in the defense against disease?
The The purpose of this activity is to use electrochemistry techniques to generate colloidal silver and then utilize the colloidal silver to determine if the growth of the bacteria Saccharomyces cerevisiae or Escherichia coli can be inhibited.

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