Megasonic sonication for cost-effective and automatable elution of Cryptosporidium from filters and membranes

Abdelfateh Kerrouche*, Marc P Y Desmulliez, Helen Bridle

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


Sample processing is a highly challenging stage in the monitoring of waterborne pathogens. This step is time-consuming, requires highly trained technicians and often results in low recovery rates of pathogens. In the UK but also in other parts of the world, Cryptosporidium is the only pathogen directly tested for in routine operational monitoring. The traditional sampling process involves the filtration of 1000. L of water, semi-automated elution of the filters and membranes with recovery rates of about 30-40% typically. This paper explores the use of megasonic sonication in an attempt to increase recovery rates and reduce both the time required for processing and the number of labour-intensive steps. Results demonstrate that megasonic energy assisted elution is equally effective as the traditional manual process in terms of recovery rates. Major advantages are however offered in terms of reduction of the elution volume enabling the current centrifugation stage to be avoided. This saves time, equipment and staff costs and critically removes the step in the process that would be most challenging to automate, paving the way thereby for highly effective automated solutions to pathogens monitoring.

Original languageEnglish
Article number4731
Pages (from-to)123-127
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Microbiological Methods
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2015


  • Cryptosporidium
  • Elution
  • Filtration
  • Megasonic agitation
  • Monitoring
  • Sonication
  • Waterborne pathogens

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • Molecular Biology
  • Microbiology (medical)


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