1994-06-01

BAF - Detection of Microbial Contamination and Identification of Biofilm Bacterial Strains in a Biological Air Filter 941341

A biological airfilter (BAF) is designed for the recycling of cabin air in crewed spacecraft. A literature study was conducted to select an appropriate method for the detection, identification, and enumeration of autochtonous bacterial strains and possible (pathogenic) infections in the air filter.
The most suitable technique appears to be the use of fluorescently labeled 16S rRNA probes. The DNA labels can selectively bind to intact bacterial cells, thus enabling a quantitative detection with flow cytometry or fluorescence microscopy. Detection of possible infections can be performed with 16S rRNA probes or with PCR detection kits for a more sensitive detection.

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