APPLICATIONS OF TECHNOLOGY:
- Water quality testing
- Health and human safety
- Environmental cleanup
- Oil reservoir sulfate optimization
- Homeland security
- Diagnosis and treatment of disease
- Accurately identifies all known bacteria and archaea
- Accurately quantifies high- and low-abundance taxa
- Reproducible for multiple replicates
- Built-in controls for consistent performance characteristics
- Identifies contamination sources more accurately than single biomarker analysis
- No culturing required
Gary Andersen and Eric Dubinsky at Berkeley Lab have developed a technology for more precisely analyzing environmental contamination in coastal waters by determining the signature microbial communities of known fecal sources, such as birds, grazers, or sewage.
Targeting the whole microbial community for source identification is a fundamentally different approach that overcomes the shortcomings of traditional fecal indicator bacteria (FIB) monitoring—which cannot, with precision, distinguish between anthropogenic, wildlife, and non-fecal sources—as well as molecular source tracking that relies on single phenotypic or genotypic biomarkers that cannot uniquely identify one type of waste. This innovative method for determining the distinctive census of microbes in a microbial community is perfectly suited for studying the dynamics of microbial community structure under changing environmental conditions.
DEVELOPMENT STAGE: Proven principle.
STATUS: Published U. S. Patent Application 2014/0200149. Available for licensing or collaborative research.
SEE THESE OTHER BERKELEY LAB TECHNOLOGIES IN THIS FIELD:
Miniature Airborne Particle Mass Monitors, IB-1850, 2149
REFERENCE NUMBER: WIB-3205