Pathogens identified by Raman imaging | Chemical & Engineering News
Volume 85 Issue 12 | p. 45 | Concentrates
Issue Date: March 19, 2007

Pathogens identified by Raman imaging

Department: Science & Technology
Credit: Anal. Chem.
Credit: Anal. Chem.

In the event of a biological attack, rapid methods for identifying pathogenic organisms will be important for mounting an effective response. Raman chemical imaging spectroscopy could be one of those methods. Kathryn S. Kalasinsky of the Armed Forces Institute of Pathology, Patrick J. Treado of ChemImage, and coworkers report the development of a library of spectroscopic signatures for identifying bacteria in complex samples (Anal. Chem., DOI: 10.1021/ac0700575). The researchers examined biothreat agents using optical and fluorescence imaging and then confirmed the identity of the organisms by their Raman spectral signatures. In the composite image shown, spores of Bacillus globigii, a close relative of Bacillus anthracis, were identified by their different-colored fluorescence (blue) and Raman (green) signatures. The method also is sensitive enough to detect single anthrax spores. In a blind study of 20 samples, the method correctly identified several pathogens, including B. anthracis and genetically similar bacteria.

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