Language Translation
  Close Menu



Biothreat Laboratory

The Biothreat Laboratory section examines clinical isolates, environmental samples, and food samples for the presence of highly dangerous organisms and biological toxins. Since these organisms and toxins may be found naturally, the laboratory is responsible for rapidly “ruling-out” the presence of these organisms and toxins from samples sent from sentinel laboratories throughout the state.

Enteric and Parasitology Laboratory

The Enteric and Parasitology Laboratory performs reference laboratory services to aid in the identification of enteric organisms submitted by laboratories throughout the state. This laboratory offers services to isolate, identify, and/or confirm Salmonella sp., Shigella sp., Campylobacter sp., and E. coli O157:H7, among others, from clinical specimens. Complete serotyping of Salmonella sp. and Shigella sp. is provided.  Approved clients may also receive complete examination of paired formalin and polyvinyl alcohol (PVA) preserved stool specimens for intestinal parasites.  Blood preparations for parasites are sent to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) for examination.

Method Development Laboratory

The Method Development Laboratory is responsible for bringing new assays into the laboratory. IDOHL optimizes the tests, performs the validation, and writes up the required validation paperwork for CLIA. Method Development is also responsible for writing standard operating procedures (SOPs) for new assays and training pertinent staff in new assays. This section develops and implements methods for detection and subtyping of various pathogens.

Antimicrobial Resistance Laboratory

State law requires clinical laboratories to submit isolates of Candida auris as well as carbapenemase producing organisms (CPO), including Enterobacterales, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, and Acinetobacter baumanii.  Phenotypic testing is performed for the presence of carbapenemases for CPOs.  If carbapenemases are found to be present, further molecular characterization is performed to determine the mechanism of resistance.  Antimicrobial susceptibility testing (AST) is performed for CPOs.  Candida auris isolates are referred to the Wisconsin State Laboratory for Anti-Fungal Susceptibility Testing.  Vancomycin resistance testing is also performed for Staphylococcus aureus isolates that clinical laboratories have found to be intermediate or resistant.

Reference Microbiology Laboratory

The Reference Microbiology Laboratory offers identification of selected bacterial pathogens from human sources which are of public health importance. Only pure viable cultures of clinically significant bacterial isolates are accepted. These include those of public health interest as well as those that Indiana State law requires to be submitted: Neisseria meningitidesHaemophilus influenzae , and Streptococcus pneumoniae from invasive specimens from patients 5 years old or younger. Grouping/typing is provided when appropriate. This laboratory is not a general identification service for laboratories that provide human clinical specimen testing.

Serology Laboratory

The Serology Laboratory offers serological analyses for infections of public health importance, including HIV, hepatitis A, B, and C, syphilis, chlamydia and gonorrhea. It also tests for antibodies to infections associated with vaccine-preventable diseases and vector-borne pathogens such as measles (rubeola), mumps, rubella, West Nile virus, and arbovirus (WEE, EEE, SLE, CE).

Virology Laboratory

The Virology Laboratory provides testing to detect and identify viruses pathogenic to humans and potential public health concerns. Some viruses are isolated in culture, e.g., respiratory viruses, herpes viruses causing skin lesions, enteroviruses, and mumps and measles viruses. Detection of nucleic acids in infected specimens is used to identify infections caused by mumps, influenza virus, and to subtype influenza isolates.  

The Virology Laboratory also accepts reference viral isolates for confirmation and subtyping of viruses including influenza, enteroviruses, and adenoviruses. West Nile virus is detected from pools of mosquitoes for surveillance data.


Emergency Chemical Exposure Laboratory

The Emergency Chemical Exposure Section examines blood and urine from individuals who may have been involved in a toxic chemical-exposure. Exposure may have come from highly toxic hazardous chemicals. Surveillance testing of blood samples for Lead exposure is also performed in this Section, which includes Pediatric Blood Lead testing and Biomonitoring.

Food Chemistry Laboratory

The Food Chemistry Laboratory checks Food from Dairies, Farms, Manufacturers, Wholesale and Retail Outlets for toxic material or for conformance to state and federal safety regulations and standards of identity.

The Food Chemistry Laboratory supports:

  • Investigation of Consumer Complaints
  • IDOH Food Protection Division
  • FDA programs for the analysis of meat for Protein, Fat, Moisture and Salt
  • USDA programs for analysis of dairy products for Pesticides, PCBs and Vitamins.
  • Indiana State Board of Animal Health Surveillance Programs
  • Investigation of foreign materials in food products
  • FDA programs for the analysis of Metals (Arsenic/Lead) in Juices, Spices, Baby Food, Vitamins, and other grocery products
  • IDOH Lead and Healthy Homes Division Investigations
  • Local Health Department Investigations
  • Emergency Response
Radiochemistry Laboratory

The Radiochemistry Section provides Gross Alpha, Gross Beta, Radium-226 and Radium-228 testing for drinking water. Radiochemistry equipment includes Liquid Scintillation Counters, Gas Proportional Counters, Gamma Spectrometer equipped with High Purity Germanium Detectors.

Radiochemistry Laboratory Supports:

  • Municipal and Public Water Supplies for IDEM-mandated Radionuclide drinking water testing, for a fee.
  • Private drinking water testing, for a fee
  • Indiana Department of Homeland Security
  • IDOH Food Protection Division
  • Local Health Department Investigations
  • Emergency Response
Environmental Chemistry Laboratories

The Environmental Chemistry Laboratories are comprised of 3 Sections - Organic, Inorganic, and Metals. Testing equipment includes GCMS, GCMSMS, IC, TOC, Flow Analyzers, ICP, ICPMS, ICPMSMS, LCMSMS, and LC-QTOF. The Environmental Chemistry Laboratories support:

  • Indiana Department of Environmental Management (IDEM)
  • Indiana Lead and Healthy Homes
  • Indiana Department of Natural Resources (DNR)
  • IDOH Environmental Health Division
  • IDOH Water Fluoridation program
  • IDOH Food Protection
  • Indiana Department of Homeland Security (IDHS)
  • Local Health Departments

Services include analysis for Fluoride, Nutrients, Pesticides, Volatiles, PFAS, Arsenic, Lead, other Metals, to assess drinking water, surface and ground waters, soils, paint, fish, building materials, industrial waste and emergency response situations.

The Environmental Chemistry Laboratories also offer a limited number of drinking water tests to:

  • All Citizens
  • Public Water Utilities
  • Municipal and Public Water Supplies for IDEM-mandated Radionuclide testing
  • Schools/Day Care Centers

People who get their drinking water from a private well are encouraged to test yearly for Nitrate + Nitrite, and at least every 5 years for Metals such as Arsenic.

Citizens who believe an environmental contamination problem is a public health issue should contact their Local or County Health Department.

Collaborations with academic institutions on environmental questions of public health importance has included measurements of Pharmaceuticals and Personal Care Products, Herbicides, Pesticides, and PFAS in water and fish.

Rabies Laboratory

The Rabies Laboratory performs rabies testing on animal specimens Monday through Friday, excluding holidays. A complete description of how to submit specimens for rabies testing can be found on the IDOH website (add link to Testing/Available Tests/Rabies). The Rabies Submission Guidelines  poster is available as well. Results are usually available 24 hours after receipt of the head/specimen if it is not frozen. Animal heads/specimens submitted on Friday afternoon are held until Monday morning or next business day. For further consultation regarding human exposure, call the IDOH Rabies Epidemiologist at (317) 232-3084.