Legionella is a bacterium that is naturally found in water, although it grows best in warm water. Some species have been known to cause diseases in humans, notably Legionnaires’ Disease and Pontiac Fever, though any disease caused by the bacterium is referred to as legionellosis. Transmission of Legionella is not passed from person to person; rather, it is contracted when the person inhales a droplet nuclei in mist or vapor containing the bacteria.
Reported cases of Legionnaires’ disease have steadily increased in the United States from 400 cases per year in the 1990’s to 4200 cases in 2011, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Scientists believe the actual number of cases is between 50,000 and 100,000, because many cases of unreported pneumonia are actually caused by the bacterium that causes Legionnaires disease. Most cases of illness are caused by Legionella pneumophila, Serogroup 1. Legionnaires’ disease is a type of pneumonia that affects the lungs and is often fatal. Individuals most likely to develop Legionnaires’ disease are those with compromised immune systems or lung problems, such as smokers, the elderly, the very young, and chemotherapy patients.
Legionella are gram-negative rods and require selective media to grow. These are mesophilic bacteria (35-37°C). To date, there is 50 known species of Legionella and about 70 serogroups have been recognized to cause disease in humans. The most common species of Legionella that causes legionnaire’s disease is Legionella pneumophilaSerogroup 1.
|Legionella Testing Information||Legionella Chain of custody|
|NYS ELAP Water Chain of custody||CDC Procedures for the Recovery of Legionella from the Environment|
|NY Water Sampling FAQ Sheet|
|1015||Water, Legionella Analysis, CDC Method (Includes Serogroup 1 and 2-15), 250 mL||10 days||Click Here||Click Here|
|1015.1||Water, Potable, Legionella Analysis, ISO 11731:1998, 1 Liter||10-12 days|
|1015.2||Water, Non-Potable, Legionella Analysis, ISO 11731:1998, 1 Liter||10-12 days|
|1015.3||Water, Non-Potable, Legionella analysis by filteration and Acid treatment||10-12 days||Click Here||Click Here|
|1015.4||Water, Legionella pneumophila Detection, Legiolert (Quanti-Tray)||10-12 days||Click Here||Click Here|
|1015.5||Water, Non-Potable, Legionella Analysis, ISO 11731:1998, 250 mL||10-12 days||Click Here||Click Here|
|1015.6||Water, Potable, Legionella Analysis, ISO 11731:1998, 250 mL||10-12 days||Click Here||Click Here|
|1015.6||Water, Legionella Analysis, CDC Method (Includes Serogroup 1 and 2-15),1 liter||10-12 days||Click Here||Click Here|
|1515||Water, Potable, 1 liter, CDC Method, Legionella pneumophila (Includes 1, 2-15) Serogrouping and non-pneumophila Speciation||10-12 days||Click Here||Click Here|
|1516||Water, Non-Potable, 1 liter, CDC Method, Legionella pneumophila (Includes 1, 2-15) Serogrouping and non-pneumophila Speciation||10-12 days||Click Here||Click Here|
- Field guide for the determination of biological contaminants in environmental samples.
- Guidelines for Prevention of Nosocomial Pneumonia
- Occupational Safety & Health Administration
OSHA standards, hazard recognition, possible solutions
- Legionnaires’ Disease Associated with Cooling Towers – MA, MI, RI
- Legionnaires’ Disease Associated with Potting Soil – CA, OR, WA, May-June 2000
- “Reducing Risks Associated with Legionella Bacteria in Building Water Systems.” B.G. Shelton, G. K. Morris and G.W. Gorman. Pathcon Laboratories, Norcross, GA 30092