ASTM WK34168

    New Test Method for Quantification and Characterization of Microbial Contamination in Liquid Fuels by Quantitative Polymerase Chain reaction (qPCR)

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    Developed by Subcommittee: D02.14 | Committee D02 | Contact Staff Manager


    1. Scope

    1. Scope 1.1 This method provides a procedure for quantifying and taxonomically characterizing microbes in fuel and fuel associated water samples. 1.2 The method entails the application of quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR) technology to determine total bioburden and to identify the different microbial taxa in the sample and the relative abundance of those taxa. 1.3 This method is a laboratory protocol. As described in Practice D 7464, the qualitative and quantitative relationship between the laboratory results and actual microbial communities in the systems from which samples are collected are affected by the time delay and handling conditions between the time of sampling and time that testing is initiated. 1.4 The values stated in SI units are to be regarded as standard. No other units of measurement are included in this standard. 1.5 This standard does not purport to address all of the safety concerns, if any, associated with its use. It is the responsibility of the user of this standard to establish appropriate safety and health practices and determine the applicability of regulatory limitations prior to use.

    Traditional microbiological test methods depend on the ability of microbes to either be seen visually (microscopic examination; lower limit of detection 2 x 107 cells/mL) or to elaborate into colonies on growth media (lower limit of detection putatively 1 CFU/mL). However, all culture methods are selective for microbes that will grow on the particular nutrients provides and under the incubation conditions. A quantitative, culture independent method is needed in order to better understand the process of fuel and fuel system biodeterioration.


    microbiology; genomics; qPCR; polymerase chain reaction; fuel; petroleum; microbially influcence corrosion; bacteria; biodegradation; biodeterioration; enumeration; fuel microbiology; fungi

    The title and scope are in draft form and are under development within this ASTM Committee.

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    Work Item Status

    Date Initiated:

    Technical Contact:
    Frederick Passman

    Draft Under Development