Detection of specific bacteria in water: implications of survival strategy

Pickup, R.W. and Rhodes, G. (1997) Detection of specific bacteria in water: implications of survival strategy. In: Sutcliffe, D.W. (ed.) The microbiological quality of water. Ambleside, UK, Freshwater Biological Association, pp. 28-34. (FBA Special Publications,5)

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It is widely recognised that conventional culture techniques may underestimate true viable bacterial numbers by several orders of magnitude. The basis of this discrepancy is that a culture in or on media of high nutrient concentration is highly selective (either through ”nutrient shock” or failure to provide vital co-factors) and decreases apparent diversity; thus it is unrepresentative of the natural community. In addition, the non-culturable but viable state (NCBV) is a strategy adopted by some bacteria as a response to environmental stress. The basis for the non-culturable state is that cells placed in conditions present in the environment cannot be recultured but can be shown to maintain their viability. Consequently, these cells would not be detected by standard water quality techniques that are based on culture. In the case of pathogens, it may explain outbreaks of disease in populations that have not come into contact with the pathogen. However, the NCBV state is difficult to attribute, due to the failure to distinguish between NCBV and non-viable cells. This article will describe experiences with the fish pathogen Aeromonas salmonicida subsp. salmonicida and the application of molecular techniques for its detection and physiological analysis.

Item Type: Book Section
Title: Detection of specific bacteria in water: implications of survival strategy
Personal Creator/Author:
Pickup, R.W.
Rhodes, G.
Title of Book: The microbiological quality of water
Sutcliffe, D.W.
Refereed: No
Series Name: FBA Special Publications
Number: 5
Page Range: pp. 28-34
Date: 1997
Publisher: Freshwater Biological Association
Place of Publication: Ambleside, UK
ISBN: 0-900386-57-6
Issuing Agency: Freshwater Biological Association
Uncontrolled Keywords: Bacteria; Bacterial diseases; Detection; Methodology; Molecular biology; Microbiological culture
Subjects: Ecology
Item ID: 5318
Depositing User: Hardy B Schwamm
Date Deposited: 11 May 2011 12:03
Last Modified: 29 Sep 2011 15:05
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