February 1, 2021 zacherlaw 0 Comments

This post continues the discussion of the National Academies of Sciences management of Legionella in water systems report. Chapter two begins to delve into the diagnosis, ecology, and exposure pathways of Legionella. In our everyday life, humans live peacefully alongside a number of microbes, organisms so small they are invisible to the human eye. Most of these microbes are harmless and may are beneficial. However, there are groups of microbes that cause disease  In general, the impact of exposure to a particular microbe depends on three factors. Firstly, the quantity of microorganisms. Secondly, their capacity to cause harm. Lastly, the strength of an individual…

January 29, 2021 zacherlaw 0 Comments

This post continues the discussion of the National Academies of Sciences management of Legionella in water systems report. Chapter one serves as an introduction that outlines how Legionella spreads, as seen in Part 1. This post focuses on the many possible sources of infection. Legionnaires’ disease has been known to have outbreaks at places where there is both biofilm growth and the potential for aerosolization. Many such areas exist in man-made structures, including components of heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) systems such as cooling towers and humidifiers; indoor plumbing (called premise plumbing) including outlets such as showerheads and faucets; as well as spas…

January 27, 2021 zacherlaw 0 Comments

In the United States, incidence of Legionnaires’ disease increased more than six times from 2000 to 2018. Additionally, this number is commonly known to be under reported. This post continues the discussion of the National Academies of Sciences management of Legionella in water systems report. Chapter one serves as an introduction that outlines how Legionella spreads, and how the country currently handles it.  Despite numerous reports of common-source outbreaks in the community, through travel or through hospital exposures, and despite improvements in laboratory tools, the vast majority of Legionella cases remain sporadic. Sporadic cases mean that they are community-acquired cases for which the primary exposure source…

January 13, 2021 zacherlaw 0 Comments

The next several blog posts are going to be a series that highlight a very important recent 2020 study published by the National Academies of Sciences about the management of Legionella in water systems. This comes at an important time, as Legionella is the number one cause of reported waterborne disease outbreaks in the United States.  The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine produced a report that addressed the current state of the science with regard to Legionella. As a result, they included the current ecology, disease diagnosis, quantification, prevention and control, policy and guidance, and all associated research needs. The U.S. Centers…

April 8, 2018 zacherlaw 0 Comments

About a month ago, Transparency Market Research estimated that the global legionella testing market was valued at US$180 million in 2016. In addition, Transparency Market Research also estimated that the testing market would reach around US$398.7 million by 2025. Perhaps one of the biggest factors for future growth moving forward is that the incidence rate is increasing globally, particularly in developing regions. With this higher incidence of infectious diseases comes a steady increase in the demand for diagnostic kits and with it the global legionella testing market is expected to substantially grow. As it stands now, the incidence rate of…

April 5, 2018 zacherlaw 0 Comments

Assessing plumbing systems can sometime feel like a task which you are going to be inherently blind in. After all, regular testing is important however pinpointing the exact location of clusters can often be difficult. Luckily, there appears to be a new model which may help public health authorities assess water quality. According to one of the co-authors and civil and environmental engineering professor Wen-Tso Liu, “(P)revious studies have relied on reproducing the conditions of a stagnant plumbing system within a lab setting,” however for this study, the team was “able to collect samples in a real-life situation.” The team collected…

March 29, 2018 zacherlaw 0 Comments

Rubber ducks are a classic component of the stereotypical bath and have made an impact on numerous individual’s lives. Yet with its constant presence in our bathing rituals and lives, an uncomfortable subject may inadvertently emerge; how clean/safe is this object. According to a study by American and Swiss researchers, toy ducks appear to be a breeding ground for microbes and bacteria like Legionella. In the study, water released from four out of every five ducks found Legionella along with other Pseudomonas aeruginosa bacteria, a fairly disturbing frequency. The study, which was conducted by the Swiss Federal Institute of Aquatic Science…

March 26, 2018 zacherlaw 0 Comments

Last week, researchers at the Technical University of Munich announced that they had developed a microarray rapid test which can detect Legionella in around 35 minutes. Now there is, in fact, a rapid test for detecting Legionella currently in clinics; urinalysis. But according to the head of the research group and the Chair of Analytical Chemistry and Water Chemistry at the Technical University of Munich PD Dr. Michael Seidel, the urinalysis test “serves only as a first indication and is not suitable for screening the water of technical systems,”. The research is part of the “LegioTyper” project which is funded by the German…

March 22, 2018 zacherlaw 0 Comments

Earlier this week, we wrote about Spartan Bioscience and how the company had partnered with the Public Services and Procurement Canada (PSPC) to conduct a study examining cooling towers at federal government buildings. The results from the test were a bit negative as it was revealed that around 39% of the cooling towers had tested positive for Legionella bacteria at levels greater than 10 bacteria per milliliter while approximately 8% of the cooling towers tested positive for Legionella levels that were greater than 100 bacteria per milliliter. Now, about a week later from when the initial results were revealed, the PSPC is coming…

March 1, 2018 zacherlaw 0 Comments

Earlier last month, researchers with the National Institutes of Health reported that many hospital plumbing systems are a ‘vast’ reservoir of drug-resistant superbug germs and other bacteria like Legionella. This report came after NIH officials had done checks of the plumbing at the their flagship hospital near Washington, D.C., checks which showed drains could be packed with bacteria and ultimately concluded that this issue is likely present at other hospitals. Now the report also mentioned that the superbugs are not very common anywhere else in the hospitals and as such, they are simply unlikely to be an overall threat to…