In near future, identifying the bacterial species responsible for infections developing in hospital patients will take just a few minutes, thanks to the scientists who developed such an analytical procedure.
Developed by researchers from the Institute of Physical Chemistry of the Polish Academy of Sciences in Warsaw, the main role is played by innovative bioconjugates — luminescent, magnetic microparticles coated with appropriately selected bacteriophages.
The detection device used in the new technique for identifying bacteria is a flow cytometer.
“Measurement in the cytometer typically takes about a minute. The result is a graph on which we see how all the bioconjugates scatter the incident light and emit the fluorescence. Since we know the signal, we should obtain from pure bioconjugates, and can easily determine whether the sample contains the bacteria we are looking for, and if so, in what concentration,” the researchers noted in a paper published in the journal Bioconjugate Chemistry.
According to researchers, the identification of the bacteria can be carried out in almost any hospital analysis laboratory and the waiting time for the result is reduced to minutes.
It is important to determine the species of the bacteria ravaging the body of a patient to make treatment successful.
“Faster, better, cheaper — we managed to achieve all of these objectives. This can be seen by any interested party as, in full awareness, we relinquished patent protection,” said Jan Paczesny from the Polish National Science Centre.