Title: On-site qPCR for the rapid detection of Legionella to safely reopen buildings
This presentation will demonstrate how on-site qPCR for Legionella detection is an advantageous tool to be used to safely reopen buildings after prolonged shutdown or reduced occupancy.
1. The first study will demonstrate how on-site qPCR can be used by public health to determine Legionella contamination if required to do outbreak testing. This case study demosntrates the accuracy of the system as it is compared to tradtional culture methods.
2. The second study will demonstrate how on-site qPCR can be used by hotel owners as part of their reopening plans, illustrating that Legionella can grow in plumbing systems after prolonged shutdown. The study demonstrates the utlitiy of the system as hotel owners can determine risk in
3. The third case study will demonstrate how on-site qPCR can be used by water treaters to monitor cooling towers during building reopening plans.
One presenter: Shaimaa Ahmed, PhD
Shaimaa Ahmed is the R&D Leader for Spartan’s environmental testing division. She holds a PhD in Pharmacology and Toxicology from the University of Toronto, Canada.
Temporary shutdown and reduced operation of buildings can create hazardous water for returning occupants. One such hazard is Legionella bacteria, the causative agent of Legionnaires’ disease (LD). Prolonged shutdown can create ideal scenarios for Legionella growth which include stagnant water, reduced circulating disinfectants, as well as buildup of scale and organic material in plumbing systems. The current standard for identifying and assessing Legionella growth is laboratory culture, which is prone to inaccuracies due to sample processing and the requirement for shipping, and has a 7-14-day turnaround time for a result. On-site qPCR is not susceptible to these effects and offers a rapid sample-to-result turnaround time of Legionella in water systems to safely reopen buildings. In the first case study, a prominent Health Department analyzed both potable and non-potable water sources for Legionella contamination using on-site qPCR and laboratory culture, demonstrating the accuracy of the on-site qPCR system. In the second case study, a hotel chain utilized the Spartan qPCR system during validation testing for building reopening and was compared to traditional culture methods. In the third case study, a water treatment company was able to test the utility of the on-site qPCR system in non-potable waters (cooling towers), generating comparable results to laboratory culture. Overall, these case studies indicate that on-site qPCR is a powerful tool to help with building reopening, with results similar to traditional culture methods without a 7-14 day time delay.
Shaimaa Ahmed is the R&D Leader for Spartan’s environmental testing division. She holds a PhD in Pharmacology and Toxicology from the University of Toronto, Canada