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Uploaded on Apr 29, 2011
Research Minute: Pediatric infectious diseases specialist Charles Woods on DNA fingerprinting of bacteria. When there appears to be an outbreak of infection in the community or hospital, investigators must track down the source to know how to treat or prevent the disease from spreading. DNA fingerprinting can help locate the culprit, whether an infection is food- or water-borne, whether it's being spread person-to-person or by unsanitary equipment. It can help infection control personnel decide between an in-depth investigation or continued routine monitoring, saving time and money. DNA fingerprinting also can be used to understand the spread of antibiotic-resistant microbes within the community.