Biological monitoring techniques play an increasingly important role in the evaluation of acute toxicity. Biosensors using bioluminescent bacteria have been in use for over 30 years. Modern Water developed Microtox technology to address the limitations of conventional bioassay toxicity analysis.
Due to its simplicity, speed, economics, convenience, and reproducibility, Microtox has become one of the most recognized bioassays in the world today. Unlike conventional tests that can take up to 96 hours and are subject to manual counting, Microtox can provide highly accurate results in less than 1 hour.
The Microtox system uses a proprietary strain of bioluminescent bacteria, Aliivibrio fischeri, naturally found in the light organ of the Hawaiian Bobtail Squid. Upon exposure to a substance or sample containing toxic materials, changes in the bacteria’s light output are measured by the Microtox LX or FX instrument’s luminometer. The greater the reduction in light emitted by the bacteria, the greater the toxicity of the sample.