A vacuum apparatus has been described that has enabled samples of bacterial spore suspensions to be dehydrated at defined temperatures between 0 and 65 °C, with facilities for reequilibration of the dried samples to aqueous vapor pressures between 5 × 10-4and 10 torr and subsequent exposure to dry gases. The apparatus has been characterized using sample temperature/drying-time profiles, and drying rate/ drying-time curves, and the reproducibility of the dehydration and rehydration techniques has been established. Biological data have confirmed the suitability of the apparatus since no loss of spores from samples has been observed during any of these experimental treatments. On the basis of measurements recorded during rehydration of dried spores, it is suggested that dehydration occurs at specific sites in the spore which are of two types, 1) reversibly dehydrated (rehydratable) and 2) irreversibly dehydrated (nonrehydratable). © 1976.
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