5 Second Rule

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September 25, 2012

Dr. Rosalind Blackwell
Program Director
Centers for Disease Control
www.cdc.gov

Dear Dr. Blackwell

The five second rule which claims that food can be safely eaten within five seconds of being dropped on the floor. It is important for the safety of the people to find out if this myth is true or not. The experiment was tested in my biology class where I monitored the growth of bacteria on food dropped on the floor and food not dropped on the floor.

My experiment included chewing a piece of sterile gum and swabbing it for bacteria then rubbing the swab along the ager. Then I chewed another piece of sterile gum but spit it out near the entrance of the classroom on the tile floor. It was important not to touch the gum with one’s fingers so it is known where the bacteria came from. The gum was left on the floor for five seconds before it was picked up and swabbed.

The results gathered were very surprising and rejective of my hypothesis that the gum dropped on the floor will have more bacteria than the gum not dropped on the floor. The results gathered showed that the gum not dropped on the floor had two colonies of bacteria and the gum dropped on the floor had no bacteria on it. The results gathered by the rest of my class were random with no patterns. Some groups had no growth on the experimental group and growth of bacteria on the control group. Some also had growth on the experimental group but none on the control group. Others had no growth at all or growth on both groups. There is no pattern shown from the results gathered by my class and there needs to be more testing to confirm whether or not the five second rule is true or not.

Sincerely,

John Doe
Principle instructor, Larry A. Ryle High School
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