Recently lower limit of detection (LOD) is necessary for rapid bacteria detection and analysis applications in clinical practices and daily life. A critical pre-conditioning step for these applications is bacterial concentration, especially for low level of pathogens. Sample volume can be largely reduced with an efficient pre-concentration process. Some approaches such as hollow-fiber ultra-filtration and electrokinetic technique have been applied to bacterial concentration. Since none of these methods can provide a concentrating method with a stable recovery efficiency, bacterial concentration still remains challenging Ceramic micro- filter can be used to concentrate the bacteria but the cross flow system keeps the bacteria in suspension. Similar harvesting bacteria using ultra-filtration showed an average recovery efficiency of 43%  and other studies achieved recovery rates greater than 50% . In this study, an enhanced ceramic micro-filter with 0.14 μm pore size was proposed and demonstrated to optimize the concentration of E.coli. A high recovery rate (mean value >90%) and a high volumetric concentration ratio (>100) were achieved. Known quantities (104 to 106 CFU/ml) of E.coli cells were spiked to different amounts of phosphate buffered saline (0.1 to 1 L), and then concentrated to a final retentate of 5 ml to 10 ml. An average recovery efficiency of 95.3% with a standard deviation of 5.6% was achieved when the volumetric con- centration ratio was 10. No significant recovery rate loss was indicated when the volumetric concentration ratio reached up to 100. The effects of multiple parameters on E.coli recovery rate were also studied. The obtained results indicated that the optimized ceramic micro- filtration system can successfully concentrate E.coli cells in water with an average recovery rate of 90.8%.
Yushan Zhang, Tianyi Guo, Changqing Xu, and Lingcheng Hong, "Optimization of an enhanced ceramic micro-filter for concentrating E.coli in water," Proc. SPIE 10068, Imaging, Manipulation, and Analysis of Biomolecules, Cells, and Tissues XV, 100681B (Presented at SPIE BiOS: February 01, 2017; Published: 16 February 2017); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2252298.
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