Diagnostic Microbiology Section

Caryn Masters, MS
Diagnostic Microbiology Unit Manager
Kansas Health & Environmental Laboratories
6810 SE Dwight Street
Topeka, KS 66620
Telephone: (785) 296-2244
Fax Number: (785) 296-1641

Frances Morgan, PhD
Health Section Chief
Kansas Health & Environmental Laboratories
6810 SE Dwight Street
Topeka, KS 66620
Phone Number: (785) 296-1647
Fax Number: (785) 296-0978

Enteric Bacteriology

Salmonella, Shigella, E. coli O157:H7, Campylobacter, etc. culture and identification

Reference Bacteriology

Identification of unusual bacteria


Identification of intestinal and bloodborne parasites

TB Section

Culture and identification of tuberculosis and other mycobacterium

DNA fingerprinting

DNA subtyping of foodborne bacteria


Public Water Supply

Specimens sent to the Diagnostic Microbiology Laboratory

Specimens are accepted from any health care provider, or county health department free of charge. Packaging and shipment of specimens should conform to the United States Postal Regulations for the shipment of clinical and hazardous material. Information can be found at: http://www.usps.com (Search for "Publication 52".)

Specimens for screening of enteric pathogens parasites, and tuberculosis can be sent to the laboratory by using collections kits provided by the laboratory or in commercially available collection kits. Specimen kits can be ordered by mailing or faxing an order form to the laboratory. Click here for the order form. Cultures for identification or confirmation should be sent on appropriate transport media.

Packaging and Shipping Instructions


Provide laboratory support to local health departments, clinics, hospitals, physicians, and units of Kansas government for the detection and identification of infectious bacterial diseases and parasites. These services assist in the medical treatment of Kansas residents and provide the state public health programs with disease incidence information to guide prevention and intervention efforts to reduce the transmission of infectious diseases within the state.

Analytical Services provided by Diagnostic Microbiology include stool culture for the detection of Salmonella, Shigella, Campylobacter, and Shiga toxin-producing E. coli (STEC), including E. coli O157:H7.  Vibrio cholerae and Yersinia enterocolitica testing is also available upon request. Gonorrhea identification is provided for culture isolates that were isolated from body sites for which the nucleic acid testing methods normally used are not approved. Laboratory testing for M. tuberculosis and other mycobacteria is provided to all health care providers in the state and includes identification of all mycobacteria and antibiotic susceptibility testing for M. tuberculosis. Parasitology testing is performed for all intestinal parasites. Specimens for blood borne parasites such as malaria are sent to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for analysis. In addition we utilize DNA fingerprinting by Pulse Field Gel Electrophoresis (PFGE) to further characterize enteric bacteria associated with foodborne outbreaks.

Click here for the Laboratory Quick Reference Guide

We are now offering polymerase chain reaction (PCR) for the detection of Bordetella pertussis in nasopharyngeal specimens. This is a sensitive test procedure and will reduce both the false positive and negative results associated with the direct fluorescent antibody (DFA) test that we have been using.

Bordetella pertussis specimen requirements (.pdf)