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(Abstract for Poster Presentation) Bacterial Contamination of Paper Currency Notes in Bangladesh Muhammad Ali Akond1*, Saidul Alam1,

S.M.R. Hasan1, Sanzida Mubassara1, Mahmuda Mutahara2, Momena Shirin3, Md. Shahinur Kabir4
1

Department of Botany, Jahangirnagar University, Savar, Dhaka-1342, Bangladesh

Center for Environmental and Geographic Information Services, Gulshan-1, Dhaka1212, Bangladesh
3

Institute of Public Health, Mohakhali, Dhaka-1212, Bangladesh Primeasia University, Banani, Dhaka-1213, Bangladesh

E-mail: akond 316@yahoo.com Abstract Paper currency notes are one of the most widely used inanimate objects in human society. These currency notes are susceptible to bacterial contamination during handling and storing. The objective of the study was to assess the extent of bacterial contamination of Bangladeshi paper currency notes (known as Taka) in circulation. A total of five-hundred and forty paper currency notes of three denominations (Taka 2, Taka 10 and Taka 100) were collected from different occupational groups (viz., Fish seller, Poultry product seller, Vegetables seller, Food vendor, Shop keeper and Rickshaw puller) and subjected to bacteriological analysis. Of the 540 currency notes, 506 (93.70%) were found contaminated with bacteria. The counts of Salmonella, Shigella, Vibrio, Pseudomonas and Staphylococcus ranged between 0 to 2.49108 cfu/cm2, 0 to 1.50108 cfu/cm2, 0.77108 to 15.94 108 cfu/cm2, 0.45108 to 8.24 108 cfu/cm2 and 0.36108 to 13.2 108 cfu/cm2, respectively. Pseudomonas and Staphylococcus were detected on the currency notes collected from each occupational group. However, no Shigella was detected on the currency notes collected from Food vendors and Shop keepers in all three denominations

tested, and in case of rickshaw puller Shigella was recorded only in one type of currency note and few in number. Furthermore, a total of 200 bacterial isolates were tested for their resistance against 10 antibiotics. The antibiogram study showed that 20-86% Salmonella isolates, 8-96% Vibrio isolates, 16-82% Pseudomonas isolates, and 18-82% Staphylococcus isolates were resistant against at least one of the antibiotics tested. Thus the present study reveals that most of the Bangladeshi paper currency notes are highly contaminated with even antibiotic resistant pathogenic bacteria which may serve as a dangerous source of infection and resultantly pose a severe public health risk.