07/01/2008 - 06/30/2009
The need to protect watersheds from fecal contamination has led to an investigation of monitoring toolsto supplement coliform/E. coli measurements. A suite or toolbox of tests developed to supplement monitoring for indicator organisms is called “Microbial Source Tracking” (MST). Rhodococcus coprophilusis an emerging MST tool that has been demonstrated to identify the presence of grazing animal fecal matter or manure in the presence of fecal contamination. The current method used to detect R. coprophilusin water samples is both labor intensive and time consuming. Three to four weeks are needed to culture and confirm the presence of this organism in water samples. It is believed that molecular techniques could give reliable results in as little as 2-4 days using polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and gel electrophoresis.
Objectives: The objective of this study was to develop and validate a molecular detection method for R. coprophilusin groundwater samples.