Source Molecular Corporation attended for the first time the U.S. Smart Water Conference 2018, which was hosted by the Akron Global Water Alliance and the City of Akron, from May 30 to May 31 at the University of Akron in Ohio.
Ohio and its cities and counties face numerous water quality issues. In a recent news release, the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) estimates that about 31 percent of all household sewage treatment systems throughout the state are experiencing some degree of failure due to poor maintenance or age. When failing systems discharge untreated sewage, potential exposure to harmful bacteria and pathogens can cause public health concerns and threaten the environment.
Daron Stein, Source Molecular’s Global Head of Business Development, was one of the speakers at the U.S. Smart Water Conference with a presentation entitled, “Finding and Reducing Bacteria at the Source with Droplet Digital PCR.”
Droplet Digital PCR (ddPCR) is one of the innovative technologies applied in water quality monitoring. It is a method that utilizes a water-oil emulsion droplet system. Water samples are partitioned into nanoliter water-in-oil droplets to create thousands of miniature reactions. Binary positive or negative results for each droplet are used to calculate original sample concentration. The huge amount of sample partitioning allows ddPCR to measure multiple targets at the same time.
Mr. Stein related that an increasing number of water managers are using ddPCR to track sources of contamination and detect high-risk pathogens threatening multiple beneficial uses of their water resources. “This innovative technology is enhances water quality by filling data gaps on pollution sources. Digital PCR tells water managers not only the source of fecal pollution but also exactly how much fecal bacteria is in the water.”
The two-day conference included topics on harmful algal blooms, algal toxins, disinfection by-products, pharmaceuticals and other issues in water treatment; and featured updates and presentations from the US and Ohio EPAs, utilities, water engineering firms and consultancies, operators, scientists and innovators.