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Investigation of Legionella Contamination in Bath Water Samples by Culture, Amoebic Co-Culture, and Real-Time Quantitative PCR Methods.

07:00 EST 1st January 2000 | BioPortfolio

Summary of "Investigation of Legionella Contamination in Bath Water Samples by Culture, Amoebic Co-Culture, and Real-Time Quantitative PCR Methods."

We investigated Legionella contamination in bath water samples, collected from 68 bathing facilities in Japan, by culture, culture with amoebic co-culture, real-time quantitative PCR (qPCR), and real-time qPCR with amoebic co-culture. Using the conventional culture method, Legionella pneumophila was detected in 11 samples (11/68, 16.2%). Contrary to our expectation, the culture method with the amoebic co-culture technique did not increase the detection rate of Legionella (4/68, 5.9%). In contrast, a combination of the amoebic co-culture technique followed by qPCR successfully increased the detection rate (57/68, 83.8%) compared with real-time qPCR alone (46/68, 67.6%). Using real-time qPCR after culture with amoebic co-culture, more than 10-fold higher bacterial numbers were observed in 30 samples (30/68, 44.1%) compared with the same samples without co-culture. On the other hand, higher bacterial numbers were not observed after propagation by amoebae in 32 samples (32/68, 47.1%). Legionella was not detected in the remaining six samples (6/68, 8.8%), irrespective of the method. These results suggest that application of the amoebic co-culture technique prior to real-time qPCR may be useful for the sensitive detection of Legionella from bath water samples. Furthermore, a combination of amoebic co-culture and real-time qPCR might be useful to detect viable and virulent Legionella because their ability to invade and multiply within free-living amoebae is considered to correlate with their pathogenicity for humans. This is the first report evaluating the efficacy of the amoebic co-culture technique for detecting Legionella in bath water samples.

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This article was published in the following journal.

Name: International journal of environmental research and public health
ISSN: 1660-4601
Pages: 13118-13130

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