STEVE GSCHMEISSNER / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY STEVE GSCHMEISSNER / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Coloured scanning electron micrograph (SEM) of bacteria cultured from a mobile phone. Tests have revealed the average handset carries 18 times more potentially harmful germs than a flush handle in a men's toilet. With frequent use phones remain warm, creating the ideal breeding ground for bacteria. With touch-screen phones, the same part of the phone touched with fingertips is pressed up against the face and mouth, increasing chances of infection. In tests E. coli, Haemophilus influenzae and MRSA were amongst infectious bacteria found on handsets. Common harmless bacteria include Staphylococcus epidermidis, Micrococcus, Streptococcus viridans, Moraxella, and bacillus species. Magnification: x3000 when printed at 10cm wide.
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