From: John Darius Soltes <jdarsoltes**At_Symbol_Here**HOTMAIL.COM>
Subject: Re: [DCHAS-L] Dilute Ethidium Bromide Disposal in California
Date: Fri, 10 Aug 2018 06:14:45 +0000
Reply-To: ACS Division of Chemical Health and Safety <DCHAS-L**At_Symbol_Here**PRINCETON.EDU>
Message-ID: CY4PR22MB08238F0310DC0B33C51BB996C0240**At_Symbol_Here**

So, if I am not mistaken 0.5 ug/ml is 0.197 mols per liter EtBr

this is an abstract from 

Ethidium bromide: destruction and decontamination of solutions. (Armour Method ( Lunn, G.and E. Sansone)

Ethidium bromide in water, TBE buffer, Mops buffer, and cesium chloride solution may be completely degraded by reaction with sodium nitrite and hypophosphorous acid. Only non-mutagenic reaction mixtures were produced. Destruction was greater than 99.8% in all cases; the limit of detection was 0.5 micrograms ethidium bromide per milliliter of solution. Ethidium bromide also may be removed completely from the above solutions by using Amberlite XAD-16 resin. The limit of detection was 0.05 micrograms ethidium bromide per milliliter of solution (0.27 micrograms/ml when cesium chloride solution was used).

I haven't tested this next method but maybe follow this reaction at slight molar excess of the neutralizing reagents.

Lunn & Sansone Method: For each 100 ml of aqueous EtBr solution:

• Add 5% hypophosphorous acid.
• Add 12 ml of 0.5 M sodium nitrite.
• Stir briefly and let stand for 20 hours.
• Adjust pH to 7-9 using sodium hydroxide.
• Pour down drain with copious amounts of water.

-Hope this helps

John Darius Soltes CHMM

From: ACS Division of Chemical Health and Safety <DCHAS-L**At_Symbol_Here**PRINCETON.EDU> on behalf of Penny Manisco <pmanisco**At_Symbol_Here**G.HMC.EDU>
Sent: Thursday, August 9, 2018 5:37 PM
Subject: [DCHAS-L] Dilute Ethidium Bromide Disposal in California
Hello All,

There seems to be varying opinion on how to dispose of very dilute solutions of ethidium bromide. The concentration in question is 0.5 micrograms/ml of buffer. By hazardous waste definition, this  would not be considered a hazardous waste, but I believe some of our California universities and colleges recommend filtration of the ethidium bromide before disposal at any concentration.

Any guidance would be very much appreciated.


Penny Manisco,
Chemical Hygiene Officer
Harvey Mudd College

--- For more information about the DCHAS-L e-mail list, contact the Divisional membership chair at membership**At_Symbol_Here** Follow us on Twitter **At_Symbol_Here**acsdchas

Previous post   |  Top of Page   |   Next post

The content of this page reflects the personal opinion(s) of the author(s) only, not the American Chemical Society, ILPI, Safety Emporium, or any other party. Use of any information on this page is at the reader's own risk. Unauthorized reproduction of these materials is prohibited. Send questions/comments about the archive to
The maintenance and hosting of the DCHAS-L archive is provided through the generous support of Safety Emporium.