With the growing ill-effects of hazardous radiations, research was conducted on luminescent bacteria for the development of radiation pollution measuring biosensors. The current comprehensive analyses have explored a novel luminescence-based whole-cell biosensor based on naturally occurring luminous bacterial strains. The alterations in bacterial luminescence are produced to act as an indicator for exposure to electromagnetic radiations.
The work was carried out by Rashmi Wanjari-Kolhe, during her PhD programme under the Supervision of Dr Arti S Shanware, Director, Rajiv Gandhi Biotechnology Centre, Rashtrasant Tukadoji Maharaj Nagpur University, Nagpur, and Co-supervision of Dr Sanjay J Dhoble, Professor, Department of Physics, Rashtrasant Tukadoji Maharaj Nagpur University, Nagpur.
The isolation of novel bioluminescent bacterial strains, the Indian marine niches from Kokan (Maharashtra), Marine Drive, Mumbai (Maharashtra), and beaches of Goa were designated for water sampling. Current investigations also optimized various immobilization materials and developed easy-to-handle biobeads. The biosensing capability of isolated strains was explored by exposing them to a varied range of Electromagnetic Radiations such as Light Emitting Diodes (LED) White, Red, Blue, Greenlights, UV irradiation, and Gamma irradiation.
These radiation sensing bio-beads were analyzed through luminometric assay and proved to be the secure, rapid, reusable, and responsive monitoring system that could detect a wide variety of radiation pollutants. The luminescence-based bacterial assay developed for the range of estimation of radiations is also suitable for field applications since it does not require extravagant treatment and instrumentation. These biosensor strains were made user-friendly for field use by compiling them into a portable field kit for easier handling and transport. This biosensor kit has promising applications for radiation exposure monitoring, analyzing the range of different exposure, and the rapid analysis of extracts of hazardous radiations present in the environment, adding on good prospects for the establishment of a three-tier system of pollutant analysis- Monitor, Precaution, Treatment. This also helps to standardize the methods of pollution monitoring programs in the future as well as in the configuration of stringent rules and regulations for radiation pollution.
Dr. Rashmi Wanjari is currently working as SRF at the ICAR-National Institute of Biotic Stress Management, Raipur, Chhattisgarh. She gives credit to her success to her husband Shivesh Kolhe for his continuous support and encouragement, parents Jyoti Wanjari and Anand Wanjari as well as in-laws Sindhu Kolhe and Yashwant Kolhe.