Towards enhanced automated elution systems for waterborne protozoa using megasonic energy

B. Horton, F. Katzer, Marc Phillipe Yves Desmulliez, H. L. Bridle*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Continuous and reliable monitoring of water sources for human consumption is imperative for public health. For protozoa, which cannot be multiplied efficiently in laboratory settings, concentration and recovery steps are key to a successful detection procedure. Recently, the use of megasonic energy was demonstrated to recover Cryptosporidium from commonly used water industry filtration procedures, forming thereby a basis for a simplified and cost effective method of elution of pathogens. In this article, we report the benefits of incorporating megasonic sonication into the current methodologies of Giardia duodenalis elution from an internationally approved filtration and elution system used within the water industry, the Filta-Max®. Megasonic energy assisted elution has many benefits over current methods since a smaller final volume of eluent allows removal of time-consuming centrifugation steps and reduces manual involvement resulting in a potentially more consistent and more cost-effective method. We also show that megasonic sonication of G. duodenalis cysts provides the option of a less damaging elution method compared to the standard Filta-Max® operation, although the elution from filter matrices is not currently fully optimised. A notable decrease in recovery of damaged cysts was observed in megasonic processed samples, potentially increasing the abilities of further genetic identification options upon isolation of the parasite from a filter sample. This work paves the way for the development of a fully automated and more cost-effective elution method of Giardia from water samples.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)28-36
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Microbiological Methods
Early online date12 Dec 2017
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2018


  • Automation
  • Filtration systems
  • Megasonic elution
  • Monitoring
  • Waterborne protozoa

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • Molecular Biology
  • Microbiology (medical)


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