Legionella is a form of bacteria, typically found in low quantities in groundwater and other naturally occurring bodies of water. However, when Legionella bacteria find the optimal environmental conditions within man-made structures, they can readily proliferate. Legionella bacteria can be harmful, especially to vulnerable or immunocompromised individuals causing pneumonia like symptoms. This is why precautions should be taken following water events.
DF&A utilise PCR analysis to carry out reassurance testing for Legionella. The process involves making new DNA by copying the sample legionella, (template), DNA. A new copy is made from the template DNA during each cycle. This leads to an exponential increase in DNA. Only a target set of DNA is amplified. In each case a specific gene on the DNA genome for Legionella is chosen as the target, with all the reagents targeting this gene only. After a set number of amplification cycles the level of target DNA is compared against a control to determine whether harmful levels of legionella bacteria were present in the sample.
DF&A contextualise the results of testing, letting you know the impact to restoration procedures and required actions to decontaminate.