NIST’s Rapid Antimicrobial Susceptibility Test

NIST has developed a prototype sensor that can quickly determine – much faster than conventional antimicrobial tests – whether a specific antibiotic kill certain bacteria. The sensor, a quartz crystal coated with bacteria, sense the microbes’ mechanical fluctuations, which decrease as most cells die. This time-lapse video shows E. coli before and after exposure to ampicillin in NIST experiments. The cells multiply at first, then elongate and rupture.