Spectroscopic analysis of bacterial biological warfare simulants and the effects of environmental conditioning on a bacterial spectrum

McIntosh, Alastair J S and Barrington, Stephen J. and Bird, Hilary and Hurst, Daniel and Spencer, Phillippa and Pelfrey, Suzanne H. and Baker, Matthew J. (2012) Spectroscopic analysis of bacterial biological warfare simulants and the effects of environmental conditioning on a bacterial spectrum. Analytical and Bioanalytical Chemistry, 404 (8). pp. 2307-2315. ISSN 1618-2642

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Abstract

The ability to distinguish bacteria from mixed samples is of great interest, especially in the medical and defence arenas. This paper reports a step towards the aim of differentiating pathogenic endospores in situ, to aid any required response for hazard management using infrared spectroscopy combined with multivariate analysis. We describe a proof-ofprinciple study aimed at discriminating biological warfare simulants from common environmental bacteria. We also report an evaluation of multiple pre-processing techniques and subsequent differences in cross-validation of two pattern recognition models (Support Vector Machines and Principal Component-Linear Discriminant Analysis) for a six-class classification (bacterial classification). These classifications were possible with an average sensitivity of 88.0 and 86.9 %, and an average specificity of 97.6 and 97.5 % for the SVM and the PC-LDA models, respectively. Most spectroscopic models are built upon spectra from bacteria that have been specifically prepared for analysis by a particular method; this paper will comment upon the differences in the bacterial spectrum that occur between specific preparations when the bacteria have spent 30 days in the simulated weather conditions of a hot dry climate.