Microbial Forensics

Research output: Contribution to report/book/conference proceedingsChapterpeer-review


  • I. Petrisor
  • R. Parkinson
  • J. Horswell
  • J. Waters
  • L. Burgoyne
  • D. Catcheside
  • W. Dejonghe
  • Natalie Leys
  • Karolien Vanbroekhoven
  • P. Pattnaik
  • D. Graves

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Environmental forensics is the application of scientific techniques for the purpose of identifying the source and age of a contaminant. Microbial forensics is the focusing of microbiology, virology, biochemistry and molecular biology for use in environmental forensic investigations. Microbial forensics provides a means by which a microbial signature is used to trace a contaminant source, similar to the use of DNA in criminal forensiscs. The purpose of this chapter is (i) to provide an overview of the relationship between soils and microbial forensics, (ii) to present traditional microbial techniques available to trace specific microbial sources and (iii) to present an overview of emerging microbial techniques (DNA fingerprinting) available to identify the source and potentially the age of a contaminant release. Over the past several years, environmental forensics has been expanding as a course of study in academia, government and commercial markets. This book is a hand-on guide for environmental scientists, engineers, consultants and industrial scientists to identify the origin and age of a contaminant in the environment and the issues involved in the process.


Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationEnvironmental Forensics: Contaminant Specific Guide
Place of PublicationSan Diego, California, United States
ISBN (Print)9780125077514
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2006


  • Microbes, Forensics

ID: 276414