Streaking in microbiology isn’t as risqué as it sounds. Petri dish streaking is a fascinating technique that observes, identifies and tests microorganisms. If you have never gotten into biology, here is a simple guide on what streaking is and how to do it.
The Technique of Streaking
When using a sample, it can be hard to isolate the microorganisms in the clinical sample. Scientists use streaking to dilute the bacteria enough to isolate a single type of bacteria. With that, they can create a new colony. This helps them isolate a pure strain of microorganisms, which they then move to a new agar plate to study.
The inoculating loop is an important tool for streaking correctly. However, it needs to be completely sterilized. This is done by putting the loop in a flame to burn off any contaminants. Once cooled, microbiologists take a small amount of the inoculum and streak it across the petri dish.
There are four types of streaking methods, known as the 4-quadrant streak method. With each step, the loop must be sterilized again and streaked through the remaining inoculum to dilute the bacteria. Once the petri dish is incubated for 24 hours, the colonies can be inspected and streaked once more on a separate plate.
The Reason Behind Streaking
There are billions of bacteria around us, especially within our bodies. While this is important for the body to properly fight pathogens, bacteria can be studied and identified, which helps detect causes of diseases. However, bacteria need to be isolated and studied first to find the cause. Medical lab technicians spend time discovering causes and reasons to help find possible solutions to health problems.
Petri dish streaking is a unique process and takes steady work and careful precautions. Colonies need to pure for microbiologists to properly find solutions. As technology continues to develop, the medical industry is finding more ways to help patients and develop cures for diseases and viruses.