Bioluminescent Bioassay System.
Patent, Filed 29 Jul 96, patented 24 Nov 98,
DEPARTMENT OF THE NAVY WASHINGTON DC
Pagination or Media Count:
A system for measuring toxicity levels of a solution includes a water proof sample container transparent to visible light which holds an aqueous test solution containing bioluminescent organisms. A light tight chamber has a cavity which holds the sample container and includes a light port. A stress generating system positioned in the sample container generates pressure pulses which stimulate the organisms to generate light emissions. A light detector system mounted to the light tight chamber in a light tight manner detects light emissions generated in the sample container which propagate through the light port and are received by the light detector system. The light detector system generates an electric pulse in response to detecting each detected light emission. A controller enables the stress generating system and the light detector system, and then counts the electric pulses within a predetermined period of time. The system may further include a fiber optic bundle for propagating light from the light port to the photodetector element in the light detector system, and an optical attenuator supervised by the controller to limit the intensity of light irradiating the photodetector within the linear response range of the element, and to prevent ambient light from saturating and damaging the photodetector.