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The Inactivation of Pathogens in Contaminated Medications Via Selection Photonic Disinfection

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Each year the hospitals in the United States dispose of viable medications worth millions of dollars. These facilities are currently forced to do so not because the medications have expired, or are no longer effective, but rather because to re-use

Each year the hospitals in the United States dispose of viable medications worth millions of dollars. These facilities are currently forced to do so not because the medications have expired, or are no longer effective, but rather because to re-use any leftover medications would allow for the possibility of spreading disease. Once a medications sterile seal has been broken, any remaining contents of its container are considered potential pathogenic biohazards, and must be disposed of. The main objective of this thesis was to explore a potential alternative to simply discarding these lifesaving and often expensive leftover medications. The ultimate goal of this work is to establish a process by which excess drugs could be safely and effectively purified for re-use, subsequently cutting costs, and enhancing medication availability. Pseudomonas aeruginosa (P.a.) and Staphylococcus aureus (S.a) were cultured for their commonality in healthcare-associated infections (HAI's), and allowed to contaminate medication-like compounds. These bacterially inoculated solutions were meant to mimic the contaminated medications mentioned above and were then treated with a novel, physical means of pathogen inactivation named SElective PHOtonic DISinfection (SEPHODIS). Pathogen load reduction was determined through plate count assays both before and after exposure to the SEPHODIS system. structural preservation of medication was established through the use of infrared spectroscopy. The results of these experiments furthered the confidence of SEPHODIS as an efficient means of pathogen inactivation, while promoting promise of a real-world application in the form of medication purification.

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2018-05

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Evaluating the viability of a DNA-based chip targeted for C. trachomatis, N. gonorrhoeae, and other pathogens of interest

Description

Sexually transmitted diseases like gonorrhea and chlamydia, standardly treated with antibiotics, produce over 1.2 million cases annually in the emergency department (Jenkins et al., 2013). To determine a need for antibiotics, hospital labs utilize bacterial cultures to isolate and identify

Sexually transmitted diseases like gonorrhea and chlamydia, standardly treated with antibiotics, produce over 1.2 million cases annually in the emergency department (Jenkins et al., 2013). To determine a need for antibiotics, hospital labs utilize bacterial cultures to isolate and identify possible pathogens. Unfortunately, this technique can take up to 72 hours, leading to several physicians presumptively treating patients based solely on history and physical presentation. With vague standards for diagnosis and a high percentage of asymptomatic carriers, several patients undergo two scenarios; over- or under-treatment. These two scenarios can lead to consequences like unnecessary exposure to antibiotics and development of secondary conditions (for example: pelvic inflammatory disease, infertility, etc.). This presents a need for a laboratory technique that can provide reliable results in an efficient matter. The viability of DNA-based chip targeted for C. trachomatis, N. gonorrhoeae, and other pathogens of interest were evaluated. The DNA-based chip presented several advantages as it can be easily integrated as a routine test given the process is already well-known, is customizable and able to target multiple pathogens within a single test and has the potential to return results within a few hours as opposed to days. As such, implementation of a DNA-based chip as a diagnostic tool is a timely and potentially impactful investigation.

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2016-12