Taking the Hay Out of the Haystack: Collecting and Processing Water Samples
H. D. Alan Lindquist
from: Environmental Microbiology: Current Technology and Water Applications (Edited by: Keya Sen and Nicholas J. Ashbolt). Caister Academic Press, U.K. (2011)
Methods for the detection of specific microorganisms in drinking or source water invariably involve the collection of a water sample, and some treatment to reduce the volume of that sample. Microbial concentration is one of the defining steps in a complete method for the detection of microorganisms in water samples. Numerous approaches have been developed for this task, including filtration, sedimentation, and attraction of the microorganisms of interest to various molecules or substrates. Once the sample volume has been reduced, it is imperative to remove some of the non-biological elements of the sample as these substances generally interfere with the detection step. Finally, one of the primary elements of many molecular technologies involves a further step of extraction of genetic material from whole microorganisms. Although mechanisms and techniques have been devised for each of these tasks, there is still considerable room for improvement, as discussed in this chapter read more ...