Real-time In-situ Detection of Microbes
- *Corresponding Author:
- Linda S Powers
Department of Electrical and Computer
Engineering and Biomedical Engineering
University of Arizona, USA
Tel: (520) 621-7634
Fax: (520) 621-8076
E-mail: [email protected]
Received Date: July 09, 2012; Accepted Date: July 13 10, 2012; Published Date: July 16, 2012
Citation: Powers LS, Ellis WR, Lloyd CR (2012) Real-time In-situ Detection of Microbes. J Biosens Bioelectron S11:001. doi: 10.4172/2155-6210.S11-001
Copyright: © 2012 Powers LS, et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
Currently, no methods exist for the real-time detection and quantification of microbes in the environment or for the detection and identification of pathogenic organisms in clinical specimens. We have developed technologies which overcome these limitations and provide detection limits as low as a ten microbial cells per cm2 on abiotic surfaces, and per mL in fluids. The detection and quantification of microbes [total microbial load] is based on the intrinsic fluorescence of microbial metabolites and protein cofactors, and provides an estimate of the total microbial load as well as the relative distribution of live cells, dead cells, and endospores. Unlike existing methods, no additional reagents or sample contact is needed. This technology has been applied to the in-situ measurements of two sub-glacial microbial communities at sites in the Svalbard Archipelago, Norway, and to the efficacy of disinfection of contact lenses. In the rapid spread of a life-threatening infection, early diagnosis is of great importance. In such situations, pathogen counts will be very low, which also presents a significant challenge to diagnostic methods. We have developed a point of care disposable diagnostic based on the en masse capture of blood-borne microbes from 1 mL of fresh whole blood with surface-tethered, small molecule ligands. Quantification is based on the intrinsic fluorescence of captured cells.