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Issue 64, 2018
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Identification of pathogenic bacteria in complex samples using a smartphone based fluorescence microscope

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Abstract

Diagnostics based on fluorescence imaging of biomolecules is typically performed in well-equipped laboratories and is in general not suitable for remote and resource limited settings. Here we demonstrate the development of a compact, lightweight and cost-effective smartphone-based fluorescence microscope, capable of detecting signals from fluorescently labeled bacteria. By optimizing a peptide nucleic acid (PNA) based fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) assay, we demonstrate the use of the smartphone-based microscope for rapid identification of pathogenic bacteria. We evaluated the use of both a general nucleic acid stain as well as species-specific PNA probes and demonstrated that the mobile platform can detect bacteria with a sensitivity comparable to that of a conventional fluorescence microscope. The PNA-based FISH assay, in combination with the smartphone-based fluorescence microscope, allowed us to qualitatively analyze pathogenic bacteria in contaminated powdered infant formula (PIF) at initial concentrations prior to cultivation as low as 10 CFU per 30 g of PIF. Importantly, the detection can be done directly on the smartphone screen, without the need for additional image analysis. The assay should be straightforward to adapt for bacterial identification also in clinical samples. The cost-effectiveness, field-portability and simplicity of this platform will create various opportunities for its use in resource limited settings and point-of-care offices, opening up a myriad of additional applications based on other fluorescence-based diagnostic assays.

Graphical abstract: Identification of pathogenic bacteria in complex samples using a smartphone based fluorescence microscope

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Supplementary files

Article information


Submitted
01 Aug 2018
Accepted
21 Oct 2018
First published
29 Oct 2018

This article is Open Access

RSC Adv., 2018,8, 36493-36502
Article type
Paper

Identification of pathogenic bacteria in complex samples using a smartphone based fluorescence microscope

V. Müller, J. M. Sousa, H. Ceylan Koydemir, M. Veli, D. Tseng, L. Cerqueira, A. Ozcan, N. F. Azevedo and F. Westerlund, RSC Adv., 2018, 8, 36493
DOI: 10.1039/C8RA06473C

This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 3.0 Unported Licence. Material from this article can be used in other publications provided that the correct acknowledgement is given with the reproduced material and it is not used for commercial purposes.

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    [Original citation] - Published by The Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC) on behalf of the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS) and the RSC.
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    [Original citation] - Published by the PCCP Owner Societies.
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    [Original citation] - Published by The Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC) on behalf of the European Society for Photobiology, the European Photochemistry Association, and RSC.
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    [Original citation] - Published by The Royal Society of Chemistry.

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