Microbial Source Tracking

Editors: Jorge W. Santo Domingo1, Michael J. Sadowsky2, Michael P. Doyle3
Affiliations: 1: ORD/NRMRL/WSWRD/MCCB, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Cincinnati, Ohio; 2: Department of Soil, Water, and Climate and BioTechnology Institute, University of Minnesota, St. Paul, Minnesota; 3: , University of Georgia Center for Food Safety
Content Type: Monograph
Format: Electronic, Hardcover
Publication Year: 2007

Category: Environmental Microbiology; Applied and Industrial Microbiology

MyBook is a cheap paperback edition of the original book and will be sold at uniform, low price.

The second volume in the series , presents a state-of-the-art review of the current technology and applications being utilized to identify sources of fecal contamination in waterways. In addition to serving environmental microbiologists who monitor and seek to improve water quality, this unique new reference will be useful for researchers in the food industry, especially scientists investigating etiological agents responsible for food contamination.

Logically organized, opens with chapters covering background information on MST methods and the assumptions and limitations associated with their use. Later chapters cover a broad range of topics related to MST, including environmental monitoring, public health and national security, population biology, and microbial ecology. The concluding chapter offers valuable insights into future research directions and technology developments.

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Doody Enterprises

23 June 2013

At A Glance

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Cincinnati, OH. Provides current information on microbial source tracking. Includes fecal pollution, molecular detection and characterization tools, shellfish and microbial source tracking, statistical issues in microbial source identification, and more. For researchers. DNLM: Food Microbiology.


The goal of this book is to describe and review the methods used to detect microbial contamination of water and food. The hope is that these techniques will lead to the detection of fecal contamination and determine its source. This information can then eventually lead to the implementation of methods that prevent contamination of food and water by animal and human sources.


This book addresses the different methods used in tracking the sources that contaminate food and water. The methods for tracking are covered in detail and allow the reader to determine the pros and cons of each method. The authors are clearly professionals who have spent a great deal of time investigating the utility of these methods.


Individuals working in public health as well as individuals in the industry of food production are the intended audience. The adoption of the techniques in this book will eventually lead to a safer food and water supply. Eventually this will benefit the public.


The term microbial source tracking refers to a number of different techniques that track the source of food or water contamination. A number of different techniques that are currently being used to track pathogens include both phenotypic as well as genetic methods. These methods are constantly changing and thus improving the ability of scientist in public health to track and prevent contamination of food and water. These newer methods allow for a more rapid and accurate identification of the source of contamination. Conversely, the difficulties in using these techniques are numerous. This book discusses the standardization needed when using these methods. Standardization needs to start with sampling strategies, size of samples used, reproducibility of methods and data handling. Additionally, as technology improves, not all investigations will be using similar techniques or even sampling strategies. Thus comparisons of effectiveness of tracking are made more difficult.


This is a unique examination of the technical power to investigate microbial contamination of food and water. It is very exciting to examine the power of new technology to quietly protect the public against fecal contamination of consumable products. This book will lead to an improved understanding of the current standard and how this field will develop in the next few years.

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Reviewer: Rebecca Horvat, PhD, D(ABMM) (University of Kansas Medical Center)

Review Date: Unknown

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