Flow cytometry: The ideal tool for treatment process monitoring

Clean and safely managed water is often described as the first line of defence for public health. However, waterborne microbial contaminants pose threat to human well-being and remain a challenge for utilities and wastewater plants to eliminate in order to provide potable water for the wider community.

CyStain BacCount assays utilising CyFlow Cube 6 V2m flow cytometry is the state-of-the-art method for water quality analysis.

A typical treatment process involves multiple steps. These include coagulation and flocculation, sedimentation, dissolved air floatation, ozonation, sand filtration, membrane filtration, and chlorine- or ultraviolet (UV)-based disinfection. That said, disruption in treatment or lapse in distribution may arise, resulting in conditions for microbial growth.

For over 100 years, the heterotrophic plate count (HPC) method has been a steadfast reference measure for general microbiological quality. The term “heterotrophic bacteria” denotes all bacteria that use organic nutrients for growth; however, many remain unculturable under laboratory conditions*.

CyStain BacCount assays utilising CyFlow Cube 6 V2m flow cytometry have proven to be a fast and effective method that can be easily standardised and automated. Moreover, flow cytometry has become a vital and relevant alternative to classic HPC testing. Switzerland is the first country to have adopted this advanced method to quantify microbial cells in water*.

*References are available in the full article.

The full article is available on the latest edition of Water & Wastewater Asia Mar/Apr 2022 issue. To continue reading, click here.