Source Molecular Corporation introduced its upcoming field filtration kit at the Brown Bag Presentation: Bacteria Total Maximum Daily Loads (TMDL) and Microbial Source Tracking (MST) hosted by Geosyntec Consultants Inc. at its Oakland, California office last month.-endpar-
Source Molecular’s Mauricio Larenas disclosed that they are currently finalizing the prototype of a Field Filtration kit that will allow users to collect water samples with a syringe, put it into a special filter and within one minute have a filtered sample. A special stabilizing solution is added and the filtered sample can stay at room temperature for up to a month! Filtered samples can then be sent to Source Molecular’s laboratory with no hassle or shipping cost. Clients can just put the filtered samples in an envelope, drop them off in the mailbox of their office, and then get the results in 5-10 days!
Imagine saving thousands of dollars’ worth of costs in the logistics of collecting, shipping and managing projects with this filtration kit. “This is going to greatly simplify using this [MST] technology and it adds to the adaptability because you can cherry-pick which samples you test,” Mr. Larenas said.
Mr. Larenas was a guest speaker at the Brown Bag Presentation, which was attended by representatives from San Mateo, Regional Water Quality Control Board, City of San Jose, water districts, public utilities commission, non-government organizations, and environmental laboratories.
Mr. Larenas also shared that Source Molecular is offering a breakthrough technology called Digital Polymerase Chain Reaction (dPCR). Digital PCR provides absolute quantification of the target DNA, allowing water managers to know not only the source of fecal pollution but also exactly how much fecal bacteria is in the water. At the moment, Source Molecular is offering this service to large projects but in the next 12 months, Mr. Larenas is hopeful that they will be able to offer it to their general clientele. “We want to be the provider offering the latest and best technologies available, while innovating to reduce costs to the client,” Mr. Larenas said.
Mr. Larenas is excited for the future of MST. In the past, MST was merely an academic tool and there was no accreditation for it. But since then MST has blossomed and has become commercialized resulting in faster results (5-10 days), with an adaptive toolbox, flourishing markers, and a suite of tests. It is also gaining favorable regulatory acceptance.
“In the next 12 months, MST is going to be even more credible!” Mr. Larenas said. “In the next 12 months, the U.S. EPA is finally coming out with an official approved method for MST for human… in my opinion, this will tremendously increase the credibility of the method and open the door to using MST for regulatory applications.”
Source Molecular is working with the EPA on this official MST method, after having been proficiency-tested independently against academic laboratories. Source Molecular has taken part in the most number of MST projects in the country, working with cities, counties, utilities, water districts, state regulators, NGOs, universities, and numerous engineering and consultation firms.