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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2017, 14(5), 467; doi:10.3390/ijerph14050467

Viability of Legionella pneumophila in Water Samples: A Comparison of Propidium Monoazide (PMA) Treatment on Membrane Filters and in Liquid

1
Department of Public Health and Pediatrics, University of Torino, P.zza Polonia 94, 10126 Torino, Italy
2
Società Metropolitana Acque Torino S.p.A., C.so XI Febbraio, 14, 10152 Torino, Italy
These authors contributed equally to the work.
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Miklas Scholz
Received: 28 February 2017 / Revised: 18 April 2017 / Accepted: 20 April 2017 / Published: 27 April 2017
(This article belongs to the Section Environmental Health)
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Abstract

Legionella pneumophila is a ubiquitous microorganism widely distributed in aquatic environments and can cause Legionellosis in humans. A promising approach to detect viable cells in water samples involves the use of quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR) in combination with photoactivatable DNA intercalator propidium monoazide (PMA). However, the PMA efficiency could be different depending on the experimental conditions used. The aim of this study was to compare two PMA exposure protocols: (A) directly on the membrane filter or (B) in liquid after filter washing. The overall PMA-induced qPCR means reductions in heat-killed L. pneumophila cells were 2.42 and 1.91 log units for exposure protocols A and B, respectively. A comparison between the results obtained reveals that filter exposure allows a higher PMA-qPCR signal reduction to be reached, mainly at low concentrations (p < 0.05). This confirms the potential use of this method to quantify L. pneumophila in water with low contamination. View Full-Text
Keywords: Legionella; water; propidium monoazide (PMA); quantitative PCR (qPCR) Legionella; water; propidium monoazide (PMA); quantitative PCR (qPCR)
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Bonetta, S.; Pignata, C.; Bonetta, S.; Meucci, L.; Giacosa, D.; Marino, E.; Gilli, G.; Carraro, E. Viability of Legionella pneumophila in Water Samples: A Comparison of Propidium Monoazide (PMA) Treatment on Membrane Filters and in Liquid. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2017, 14, 467.

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