Monday 25 April 2022

Tips for Finding Volunteers for Your Clinical Trial

If you are running a clinical trial, you are most likely looking to find volunteers to participate in the study. A clinical trial is a powerful way for organizations to learn more about new treatments and test their effectiveness. Many clinical trials have a monetary value attached to them. The more money that you can recoup from the study, the more likely it is that you will be able to continue running the trial and recruiting more volunteers. It would help if you kept in mind several factors when deciding how to find the most volunteers for your clinical practice.


By Emma Sturgis

Set Up Your Clinical Trial


First of all, you will want to choose a proper study for your patients. There are many categories of clinical trials that you can choose from. One of the most common types is a randomized, double-blind trial. This type of trial uses treatment and a placebo group. In a randomized, double-blind trial, neither the study doctor nor the participants know who is receiving which drug and why. To be fit to participate in a clinical trial, you will need to either complete or be within 30 days of completion of a randomized, double-blind study.

Be Transparent About Your Recruitment Process


It is crucial to remember that many patients may decline to participate in a clinical trial based on many different considerations. You will also want to be transparent about the recruitment process when setting up your clinical practice.

Use a Patient Recruitment Company


When you choose to work with a patient recruitment company, you will want to make sure that you operate with a trustworthy, reliable source. You will want to ensure that the company is registered with the appropriate authorities and is operating under the correct legal framework. Some patient recruitment companies in Africa act as sales agents for certain pharmaceutical manufacturers.

Make Sure Your Trial Is Registered With the National Health Service


One of the most important things you can do to help your patients get the best possible treatment is to register your clinical trial with the National Health Service (NHS). A registered test will ensure that you follow the regulations and are legally compliant to conduct your practice. To be legally compliant, you will need to keep several records regarding your trial, including the identification and location of all the patients enrolled in the trial, the title and location of all the study facilities, the identification and location of all the staff members involved in the study, and the details of the treatments and the reasons for the treatment given to each patient.


You can choose several actions to find volunteers for your clinical trial. Depending on your research goal and the volunteers that you are looking to recruit, there are some diverse choices that you can choose from.


Pharmaceutical Microbiology Resources (

Tuesday 19 April 2022

Fecal coliforms: Toothbrush contamination in communal bathrooms


Data confirms that there is transmission of fecal coliforms in communal bathrooms at a university, and that toothbrushes can serve as a vector for transmission of potentially pathogenic organisms.


In  a study, all toothbrushes were collected from participants using communal bathrooms, with an average of 9.4 occupants per bathroom. Regardless of the storage method, at least 60% of the toothbrushes were contamination with fecal coliforms. There were no differences seen with the effectiveness of the decontamination methods between cold water, hot water or rinsing with mouthwash and 100% of toothbrushes regularly rinsed with mouthwash had growth on MacConkey agar indicating fecal contamination (n=2).



Fecal coliforms were seen on 54.85% of toothbrushes, which has been seen in previous studies. There is an 80% chance that the fecal coliforms seen on the toothbrushes came from another person using the same bathroom.


There are several potential sources of contamination of one's toothbrush; toothbrushes stored open in the bathroom are especially vulnerable to contamination with material from the toilet or contamination from other occupants. Sanitization and storage practices of a toothbrush are very important to the potential bacteria present on a toothbrush.


Posted by Dr. Tim Sandle, Pharmaceutical Microbiology Resources (

Wednesday 13 April 2022

Bacteria - optogenetic reprogramming

Researchers have found that engineering the light-dependent proton pump rhodopsin into Escherichia coli redirects carbon flow from cellular metabolism to biosynthetic product generation. This approach of using light as an energy source can help improve the efficiency of target compound production and reduce CO2 emissions.


Researchers have revealed that microorganisms can be engineered to use light for energy, freeing up cellular resources to produce biomanufactured products.


Metabolically engineered microorganisms are used to produce various useful chemicals throughout the world, but there's a catch: both microbial growth and chemical synthesis require a molecule called ATP as an energy source. Because of this, keeping the cellular "factories" healthy limits chemical production.


The researchers reasoned that instead they could use light, an external energy source, to improve production of useful substances without disrupting the microorganisms' natural metabolism.


To test this, the researchers introduced a heterologous membrane protein called rhodopsin into Escherichia coli, a common microorganism used in biomanufacturing. Rhodopsin is a pump that is activated by light, and the action of the pump leads to the generation of ATP without using the cell's natural machinery (known as the TCA cycle and respiratory chain) to produce it. This approach has the added benefit of reducing the emission of carbon dioxide, a byproduct of the TCA cycle.



The cells expressing rhodopsin generated significantly more chemical products when exposed to light, and the carbon flow in these cells was directed away from energy generation and toward chemical synthesis.


Once they had proved that this concept worked for various compounds such as 3-hydroxypropionate, mevalonate, and glutathione, the researchers went on to create three new strains of E. coli. One of these strains expressed super-rhodopsins with even better pump activities than the original rhodopsin that was tested.


The other two strains incorporated synthetic biological systems that provided an intrinsic supply of retinal, the activator of rhodopsin, and optimized the balanced expression of multiple genes in the relevant metabolic pathway.


The findings suggest that biomanufactured microorganisms designed to use light for energy source can be used to efficiently biosynthesize useful target compounds.


This new approach is expected to increase the efficiency of producing useful materials through fermentation and other bioprocesses while simultaneously reducing carbon emissions.




Yoshihiro Toya, et al.  Optogenetic reprogramming of carbon metabolism using light-powering microbial proton pump systems. Metabolic Engineering, 2022; 72: 227 DOI: 10.1016/j.ymben.2022.03.012


Posted by Dr. Tim Sandle, Pharmaceutical Microbiology Resources (

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