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Recovering Bacillus Spores from Swabs

STATUS: Awarded
POSTED: 1/05/12

The Seeker requires protocols for efficient recovery of bacterial spores (Bacillus subtilis/Bacillus atrophaeus) from pre-wetted surface sampling tools with handle. Guidance and standardized protocols are provided within the detailed challenge description.

This is a Reduction-to-Practice Challenge that requires a written proposal and experimental proof-of-concept data.

Source: InnoCentive
Challenge ID: 9932944
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Challenge Overview

Protecting the public and first responders from bioterrorism threats and natural disease outbreaks is a focus for researchers worldwide. While a wide array of technologies exist for detection and quantification of pathogenic organisms, all of these technologies are limited by the efficiency of recovering/isolating the target organisms from the sample collection matrix. Efficient recovery of target biological agent is especially important when very low titers of pathogens must be detected, which is the case when looking to detect extremely virulent organisms such as Bacillus anthracis deposited on non-porous surfaces. This Challenge requires a protocol that delivers highly efficient recovery of viable B. subtilis/B. atrophaeus spores from pre-wetted surface sampling tools with handle (e.g.sponge-sticks, foam spatula, or similar that can be used for 10 inches x 10 inches surface area) spiked at a 4—log range of concentrations.

The submission to the Challenge should include the following:

  1. The detailed description of the proposed Solution addressing specific Solution Requirements presented in the Detailed Description of the Challenge. This description should be accompanied by a well-articulated rationale supported by literature/patent precedents.
  2. Experimental proof-of-concept data obtained as outlined in the Detailed Description of the Challenge (and/or delivery of a material sample if requested by the Seeker).

The award is contingent upon theoretical evaluation and/or experimental verification of the submitted Solutions by the Seeker.

To receive an award, the Solvers will not have to transfer their exclusive IP rights to the Seeker. Instead, they will grant to the Seeker non-exclusive license to practice their solutions.


What is InnoCentive?

InnoCentive is the global innovation marketplace where creative minds solve some of the world's most important problems for cash awards up to $1 million. Commercial, governmental and humanitarian organizations engage with InnoCentive to solve problems that can impact humankind in areas ranging from the environment to medical advancements.

What is an RTP Challenge?

An InnoCentive RTP (Reduction to Practice) Challenge is a prototype that proves an idea, and is similar to an InnoCentive Theoretical Challenge in its high level of detail. However, an RTP requires the Solver to submit a validated solution, either in the form of original data or a physical sample. Also the Seeker is allowed to test the proposed solution. For details about treatment of IP rights, please see the Challenge-Specific Agreement.

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