Microbiology

Automated Microbiology

Scientists at the Environmental Research Institute at University College Cork, Ireland, have developed an automated microbiology pipeleine for bacterial genetics.

The robotic systems minimize human error, perform time-consuming mundane work and free scientists to focus on their research. Old collections of bacterial are been barcoded, transferred to robot-friendly tubes and are tracked automatically through the pipeline, creating a pen and paper-free environment. This is the future of microbiology.

This is an example for a fully automated microbiology process operated over a 10 day cycle.

Bacteria samples are stored in 2D barcoded tubes for fully automated sample preparation and analysis.

Day 1: preparing for sample growth
The bacteria sample is received, the tube is labelled and the sample is transferred to growth medium on a Petri dish.
Day 2: the bacterial colonies have grown
After 24 hours the bacteria have grown in the Petri dish.
Day 2: the colonies are transferred
The bacterial colonies are transferred to a 2D barcoded tube and 96 tubes are stored in a 1D barcoded rack.
Day 3: incubate and store
The rack of bacteria samples is incubated for 24 hours and then transferred to a -180°C store.
Day 4: colony sub-cultivation
Rack is removed from the store, the barcode is read and the samples are replicated on a PAA/FluidX automated workcell.
Day 5: isolate & quantify DNA
The tube of samples are delidded, the DNA extracted and quantified.
Day 6: gene amplification
The samples are prepared for gene amplification and then placed on a PCR instrument.
Day 7: gene sequencing
The sample are prepared for and set for gene sequencing.
Day 10: results
The results are returned and analysed.