Advancing Next Generation Genomic Tools for Detection of Naegleria Fowleri in Potable Water

Tulane University, New Orleans, LA

Tulane University, New Orleans, LA team photo
The video describes our project activities, findings and future direct. The specific objectives are to (i) determine the occurrence and genotype diversity of Naegleria fowleri (Nf) in Louisiana public water systems and biofilms using droplet digital PCR and multi-locus genotyping; and ii) identify the source of food for Nf in these systems using Illumina sequencing.

Project PI: Samendra Sherchan
PhD Student: Shalina Shahin (Microbiology/Environmental Health Sciences)
Master students: Nameera Islam (Public Health and Economics), Jeenal Patel (public health), Morgan Osbun (water quality/public health)

EPA P3 Video Presentation

Poster (click to open a full size image): 
Advancing Next Generation Genomic Tools for Detection of Naegleria Fowleri in Potable Water poster

This project is focused to determine the occurrence and genotype diversity of Naegleria fowleri (Nf) in Louisiana public water systems and biofilms using advanced next-generation sequencing tools. The integration of next-generation genomic tools will contribute to faster diagnosis of PAM infections and protect public health. Thus, this project relates to the three aspects of sustainability: people, prosperity, and the planet. Through the execution of the proposed innovative study, an interdisciplinary team of students will learn about environmental science, engineering, microbiology, water quality, water treatment and public health. This research will further provide valuable educational materials for outreach activities to local primary schools. The proposed study will intellectually transform our understanding of the occurrence and survival of Nf in public water distribution system. The data from this study will provide information to water utilities that can be used to develop guidance for preventing exposure to this emerging waterborne pathogen.