Rapid electrochemical phenotypic profiling of antibiotic-resistant bacteria†
Rapid phenotyping of bacteria to identify drug-resistant strains is an important capability for the treatment and management of infectious disease. At present, the rapid determination of antibiotic susceptibility is hindered by the requirement that, in existing devices, bacteria must be pre-cultured for 2–3 days to reach detectable levels. Here we report a novel electrochemical approach that achieves rapid readout of the antibiotic susceptibility profile of a bacterial infection within one hour. The electrochemical reduction of a redox-active molecule is monitored that reports on levels of metabolically-active bacteria. Bacteria are captured in miniaturized wells, incubated with antimicrobials and monitored for resistance. This electrochemical phenotyping approach is effective with clinically-relevant levels of bacteria, and provides results comparable to culture-based analysis. Results, however, are delivered on a much faster timescale, with resistance profiles available after a one hour incubation period.