Scientists have turned to a simple, automated method of tracking E.coli. This new method in tracking E.coli would reduce the incidence of waterborne diseases outbreaks.
The technique uses a laser to detect and monitor the microbe in potentially contaminated bodies of water or waterways.
Bin Chen of Purdue University Calumet, and colleagues there and at the University of Minnesota, St Paul, have turned to a laser technique for potential use in microbial source tracking.
Their technique uses laser imaging of bacterial colonies and high-resolution optical scattering image analysis to identify the host species of E. coli in a sample.
"The water quality of lakes, rivers and streams in many areas has long been monitored in the government and other agencies," said the team
"However, many of them still do not meet the goal of 'fishable and swimmable' because identifying the source of bacterial contamination is difficult," they said.
The new technology, demonstrated by Chen and colleagues, could address that shortfall allowing water contamination to be re-meditated.
The findings were elaborated in the International Journal of Computational Biology and Drug Design.