Automatically tracking bacterial growth using optical density:
The AIC is collaborating with Lumenautix to automatically measure and track the growth of bacteria cultures. An optical density measurement device developed by Lumenautix is paired with an embedded computer that periodically records optical density values that represent growth data. This data can be downloaded or viewed in real time via a web page hosted on the embedded computer. The implication of this research, headed by Dr. David Vuono, is to provide unprecedented resolution of real-time bacterial growth data under a variety of environmental conditions. These data can tell us important aspects of a microorganisms growth strategies when it faces a multitude of stressors and help us to predict dominant metabolisms under a variety of conditions. This new instrumentation also provides researchers with larger sampling volumes so that intermittent sampling can provide information on gene expression, protein translation, and metabolite production in parallel with growth data.