Food and water-borne infections are commonly caused by bacteria. Indeed, more than 90% of the cases of food poisoning are caused by bacteria. These bacteria are commonly found in many raw foods and if present even in small numbers they may cause illness. Very recently Legionella has been identified by the World Health Organization as the highest health burden of all waterborne pathogens in the European Union and many outbreaks are reported around the globe every year. The long delay between sampling and answer, and the resulting low frequency sampling, does not allow for early action to prevent legionella outbreaks, in facilities including recreation centers, hospitals, hotels, resorts and other places of public interest. The importance of developing more efficient water diagnostics for pathogens and faster analyses methods is recognized worldwide, and this is the opportunity this project aspires to fill in towards the realization of a lab-on-a-chip for L. pneumophila detection.
Target of the work during the first 9 months of the project: