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Anaerocult® Products

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Creating Anaerobic, Microaerobic and
Capneic Growth Conditions

To cultivate anaerobes, microaerophiles and capnophiles in the food and beverage industries, Merck maintains a range of Anaerocult® products, comprising systems for producing the anaerobic, microaerobic and capneic growth conditions that are required for anaerobiosis.

One Basic Principle for all Anaerocult® Products

The Anaerocult® products are based on a common basic principle. Components of the Anaerocult® Reagent Mixture react with water to chemically bind all or part of the atmospheric oxygen (O2) in a given volume of air (anaerobic jar or special incubation bag), simultaneously releasing carbon dioxide (CO2). The resulting growth environment is rich in carbon dioxide and either devoid of oxygen (anaerobic) or oxygen deficient (microaerobic/capneic). There are cost-efficient Anaerocult® products for all laboratory sizes.

A Wide Range of Anaerocult® Products for Anaerobes, Microaerophiles and Capnophiles

Anaerocult® products are available for cultivation of anaerobic microorganisms (Anaerocult® A, A Mini, P, Anaerotest®) and for microaerophilic and capnophilic microorganisms (Anaerocult® C, C Mini). Accessories include devices for sealing the mini-incubation bags (Anaeroclip®), a container with a defined volume for the plates and the Anaerocult® Reagents (anaerobic jar and plate basket), and the CULTURA Mini-Incubator.

Anaerocult® for Cultivation of Microaerophilic / Capnophilic Microorganisms

For the cultivation of capnophilic (thriving in capneic conditions, i.e. in concentrations of carbon dioxide greater than in the earth’s atmosphere) and microaerophilic microorganisms, Merck provides the systems Anaerocult® C and Anaerocult® C Mini. Microaerophilic microorganisms, in particular, play a significant role not only in human and veterinary medicine but also in the food and beverage industries.

Anaerocult® C

Anaerocult® C is used specifically for the incubation of microaerophiles and capnophiles. The special formulation of the reagent mixture used in Anaerocult® C guarantees that the cultivation jar reaches gas concentrations of 8-10 vol. % CO2 and 5-6 vol. % O2 as recommended in the literature. At an incubation temperature of 42°C, the temperature in the jar does not increase further because, unlike systems using a catalyst, the amount of energy released is low. Thus the microorganisms are not harmed by heat.
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Anaerocult® C Mini

Two petri dishes can be placed in the special incubation bag of the Anaerocult® C Mini. These can be two different culture media inoculated with one sample or two plates with the same medium inoculated with two different samples. If only one inoculated petri dish needs to be incubated it is necessary to insert a further non-inoculated dish to enable the system to work as intended. Anaerocult® C Mini is moistened with 3 ml of water and placed in the special incubation bag with the petri dishes. It contains chemicals that bind a precisely determined amount of oxygen in the special incubation bag and release a defined quantity of CO2. This creates just the right atmospheric conditions in which microaerophilic or capnophilic microorganisms are able to grow.
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Cultivation of Anaerobic Microorganisms Using Anaerocult®

For the cultivation of facultative or obligate anaerobic microorganisms, Merck provides the Anaerocult® incubation system, covering the products Anaerocult® A, Anaerocult® A Mini, Anaerocult® P, Anaerocult® IS and Anaerotest®. The importance of anaerobes as pathogenic agents responsible for infectious diseases and the role they play in the microbial spoilage of food and water has been better appreciated over the years. Very different spectra of anaerobic organisms are relevant to the food and beverage industries on the one hand and in clinical microbiology on the other. Anaerocult® products from Merck cover a wide range of requirements for cultivating anaerobic microorganisms:

Anaerocult® A

Anaerocult® A is used for anaerobic incubation of up to 12 petri dishes in an anaerobic jar. This reagent contains components which create an oxygen-free (anaerobic) environment in the jar and simultaneously release CO2. The contained oxygen does not react with hydrogen to H2O but is chemically bound to the finely distributed iron powder in the reagent mixture. The reagent is packed into little plastic shells which are sealed with special paper. The paper ensures rapid, unobstructed diffusion of evaporated water and of atmospheric oxygen into the reagent mixture as well as the release of carbon dioxide into the anaerobic jar. This results in a reduction of the oxygen concentration and higher CO2 levels. No further steps are required and no additional reagents or auxiliaries needed.
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Anaerocult® A Mini

Anaerocult® A Mini is used for the anaerobic incubation of one to four petri dishes. The Anaerocult® A Mini sachet is moistened with water and placed, together with the petri dishes and an Anaerotest® Strip to monitor the absence of oxygen, into a special incubation bag. Anaerocult® A Mini contains components which chemically bind the oxygen quickly and completely, creating an oxygen-free and CO2-containing atmosphere within the bag.
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Anaerocult® P

Anaerocult® P is used for anaerobic incubation of individual petri dishes. The Anaerocult® P sachet is moistened with water and placed in a special incubation bag, which is subsequently sealed. It contains components which chemically bind the contained oxygen quickly and completely, creating an oxygen-free environment and CO2-containing atmosphere. The transparent incubation bag allows anaerobic growth in the closed anaerobic system to be evaluated visually at any given time; the cultivated plates are never exposed to atmospheric oxygen. Each petri dish can be incubated immediately after receiving the sample; Anaerocult® P is thus ideal both for urgent cases (emergencies) and for cultivating extremely oxygen-sensitive microorganisms. Incubation of individual petri dishes permits each one to be cultivated separately over the time period and at the temperature required. It also prevents interactions between the microorganisms on different plates.
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Anaerocult® IS

Anaerocult® IS is a gas generator system for the anaerobic incubation of identification systems and susceptibility tests. It contains components that chemically bind any oxygen present in very little time while releasing carbon dioxide, thereby creating an anaerobic atmosphere. The special incubation bag is designed to accommodate all identification galleries currently on the market. Each item for incubation can be evaluated without disrupting the anaerobic conditions. Results that are initially unclear can be checked repeatedly without having to open the incubation bag.
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Anaerotest® is a test strip for checking whether the atmosphere in sealed containers or special incubation bags is anaerobic. The reaction zone of the test strip contains a dye that is blue (oxidized state) if in an air-filled (i.e. aerobic) environment. An anaerobic environment causes the chemical reduction of the dye, which then changes its color to white. The reaction is reversible so that when oxygen is re-introduced, the reaction zone turns blue again. The strips do not change color when used with Anaerocult® C and C Mini due to the residual oxygen content in the atmosphere of the bags. Anaerotest® is therefore unsuitable for use with Anaerocult® C and C Mini.
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Anaerocult® Base Products for Cultivation of Anaerobes, Microaerophiles and Capnophiles

Merck provides base products that are used in combination with the Anaerocult® system for cultivating anaerobic or microaerophilic/capnophilic microorganisms. These products include:


Anaeroclip® is a simple mechanical clip to seal the Anaerocult® A Mini, P, IS and C Mini incubation bags. The Anaeroclip® Closure Clips enable users to seal the bags without a special foil sealing instrument. Anaeroclip® Sealing Clips can be used several times.
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Anaerobic Jar and Plate Basket

The anaerobic jar simply consists of two functional parts: a lid and a base. It is extremely easy to use, convenient and time saving due to the fact that there is no need to insert or refill catalysts. There is also no need to use manometers or valves. The jar is manufactured of high quality materials, ensuring that it can be sealed leak proof and that the lid always fits properly. The plate basket for conveniently placing the plates into the jar comes with an integrated holding clip for the Anaerotest® strip.
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CULTURA Mini-Incubator

The CULTURA Mini-Incubator is an ideal incubator for a small laboratory and can be used to incubate Anaerocult® A Mini, C Mini, P and IS. It can also fit 18 dip-slides, or 12 petri dishes, blood culture bottles or identification systems of any kind. The incubator is a high quality product which is safe to handle, space saving and easy to clean. It is available as an all-in-one package that includes mini-incubator, multi-rack and a thermometer.
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