Abstract by Kennedy Wandelt
Physics and Astronomy
Effect of Hematocrit on Rapid Bacterial Extraction
Current techniques for characterizing septic bacterial strains require a minimum of 24 hours for positive blood culture detection. The aim of this research is to develop a more efficient procedure for sample processing, which will improve upon current diagnosis and prescription practices. We are achieving rapid extraction of bacteria from blood by using magnetic nanoparticles (MNPs), modified to bind to bacteria. Preliminary data from our lab suggest that red blood cell (RBC) percentage, also known as hematocrit, interferes with our bacterial capture. To test the relationship between hematocrit and bacterial capture, we produced and processed blood samples diluted with plasma to effectively reduce the hematocrit. A negative relationship between bacterial capture and hematocrit was observed, suggesting that RBCs affect the binding of MNPs to bacteria. Data has provided us with a model by which we can account for these matrix effects in future samples.