SUMMARY: The survival of strain B sprayed from distilled water into atmospheres of nitrogen, argon and helium, as a function of relative humidity (RH) at an aerosol age of 30 min. was good at low RH, while at high RH values regions of marked instability occurred. At high RH differences in survival were observed, indicating that the gas atmospheres were not completely biologically inert. The results indicated that the initial evaporation rates of the aerosol droplets did not influence the long-term survival of B in the aerosol. An alternative reason for the importance of RH is discussed, together with considerations of death mechanisms.


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