The system will image agar plates and locate microbial colonies growing on the surface of or embedded in the agar. The system will automatically record genuine microbial colony forming units. The system can detect and enumerate bacterial, fungal and yeast colonies and discriminate them from non-viable contaminants and artifacts.
Figure 1: Example Agar Plates Demonstrating Various Types of Colony Growth
Currently microbiological results are obtained as discrete Colony Forming Units (cfus), read and recorded manually by microbiologists. Direct image and data capture currently is not widely used and interfacing with laboratory systems is therefore not feasible. We believe that this process may be significantly improved with automation and imaging technologies for; Product Testing, Environmental Monitoring and Water evaluation of non-sterile and aseptic manufacturing operations. There is a desire to improve the objectivity of this process.
Figure 2: Agar Plate Assessment at Manufacturing Site
A Plates are removed from incubators. B Microbiologist reviews each plate with the aid of a magnifying lamp. C Operator manually enters plate details and result of his assessment to LIMS. D Plates are manually segregated and organized by the microbiologist.
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