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Apr 1, 2019Print this page

5 Factors in Choosing the Right Transport Media

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Do you work in a medical practice, a hospital, a research facility, or a food processing operation? Are you responsible for collecting and transporting specimens to the lab? For the best results, you first need to choose the right tool.

Before you buy, consider these 5 questions:

Can I find what I need in a commercially available device, or do I need to consider a custom design?

Transport media devices are manufactured and marketed by well-recognized medical device manufacturers. They offer these for viral, bacterial, and molecular transport – in configurations that are most commonly requested. Also, manufacturers can customize products, should you need them designed for your specific testing requirements.

Am I testing for a viral or a bacterial infection?

Virus and bacteria require different media to protect the microorganism for transport to the lab. Both media are commercially available. Puritan offers UniTranz-RT® for viral transport (and chlamydia, mycoplasma and ureaplasm) and Opti-Swab® for bacterial transport. These are available with swabs suitable for the collection site.

Is my mission to find one specific microorganism?  Do I know what I’m looking for?

If yes, application specific media are available. Choose the transport media that is formulated to support and successfully transport the target microorganism. If you are testing for the presence of Group B Strep, choose a Lim broth product, such as Puritan’s LB-100. If you are checking an environment for the effectiveness of your sanitary process, consider Puritan’s ESK product, 25-83004 PD NB.

Could my problem be caused by any of a number of infectious microorganisms?  Do I need a transport medium that will allow me to analyze for more than one?

Puritan’s UniTranz-RT® and Opti-Swab® products provide ample medium for multiple assays. Your processing method or system will be able to look at all material transported.

I am collecting DNA for a research project. I want the molecular specimen preserved intact for transport that may take several days from the field to the lab. Can I find this medium in a commercially available product?

Yes! Molecular transport media is readily available. Puritan’s PurSafe® has proven to reliably transport the specimen and is available with or without Puritan’s HydraFlock® specimen collection swab.

Planning ahead, I am involved in recommending automated specimen processing equipment for our facility. What questions do I need to ask about the specimen transport devices we will need for automated processing? Can I find transport media devices that will work for traditional processing now and then with an automated system, so the transition will be easy for our staff?

It is very important that you consider this carefully, as the investment in automated processing is significant. Consider the Opti-Swab® from Puritan. This device will perform well when testing for bacterial infection, whether processing by roll plate or automated system.

To see the entire line of Puritan’s transport media products, see our complete catalog. And for complete details, contact Puritan sales to assure you have best advice as you make these important decisions.

Topics: Media Transport Systems

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