Bacterial Biosensors to Measure Arsenic in Potable Water

Arsenic is contaminating the drinking water in numerous areas throughout the world. Particularly alarming is the situation in the Bengal Basin where more than 40 million people are drinking high-As water. Since chronic exposure to arsenic, even at low concentrations, leads to an increased risk for keratosis and skin cancer, monitoring of the potable water is imperative.

Our whole-cell bacterial biosensors offer a promising approach to analyze the arsenic concentration of tap water. They are easy to apply and provide accurate and reliable measurements in short time.

The principle is profoundly easy: we use non-pathogenic Escherichia coli bacteria that illuminate in the presence of arsenate and arsenite. The higher the light output, the more arsenic!


Benefits of our biosensor test

  • low-cost price: capable of self-multiplication
  • accuracy: laboratory proven and validated in the field
  • simplicity: easy-to-use instructions
  • environmentally relevant detection range: 8 to 80 µg As/L
  • rapidity: results available after two hours


Biophore - CH-1015 Lausanne
Tel. +41 21 692 56 28
Fax +41 21 692 56 05
Université de Lausanne