Accurate, reliable, automated or manual AST results across domains

We offer two time-honored AST solutions, Sensititre AST MIC plates and Oxoid AST discs. Both offer accurate, reliable, consistent results for the latest antimicrobials across clinical, veterinary, and surveillance fields.


Among the features discussed in this section, the first three apply to both Sensititre plates and Oxoid discs. The last three apply only to Sensititre plates.

Sensititre AST MIC plates use the broth microdilution method

Oxoid AST discs use the disc diffusion method

Accurate, reliable, consistent results

Accurate antimicrobial susceptibility testing (AST) is of critical importance in managing antimicrobial resistance. Sensititre AST plates and Oxoid AST discs consistently rank high in quality studies conducted by scientific regulatory agencies.


For example, in 2014 and 2017, the European Committee on Antimicrobial Susceptibility Testing (EUCAST) conducted disc diffusion studies of AST discs from nine manufacturers against EUCAST target values and ranges for 16 antimicrobial drugs.¹ The heat map shows the results from 2017, in which only Thermo Fisher Scientific’s Oxoid disc results were color-coded green for all 16 drugs, signifying close alignment with the target ranges.

Disc diffusion results for discs from nine manufacturers vs EUCAST quality control targets and ranges.

In 2014 and 2017, the European Committee on Antimicrobial Susceptibility Testing (EUCAST) tested AST discs for 16 antimicrobials from nine manufacturers against EUCAST QC target values and ranges. Heat maps highlight  adherence to the target ranges. In the 2017 study, only Oxoid (red outline, a Thermo Fisher Scientific brand) discs had a mean value within ±1 mm of the target (color-coded green) for all 16 antimicrobials. Source: Åhman et al, 2019.

Similarly, in a 2018 study, Jayol et al tested commercial AST products from three vendors using the broth microdilution (BMD) plate method, including Thermo Scientific Sensititre plates, for their ability to measure the susceptibility of 185 isolates of Gram-negative bacilli to the polymyxin antibiotic colistin.² The products were tested against the laborious manual BMD reference method recommended by a joint CLSI-EUCAST working group. The researchers found that “the Sensititre system was the most reliable marketed BMD panel with a categorical agreement of 97.8%.” They concluded, "The Sensititre system showed excellent concordance with the BMD reference method and was reliable for testing colistin susceptibility for all the species of Gram-negative bacilli tested."


The value of a true MIC. Current AST methods are based on assessing the ability of an antimicrobial to inhibit bacterial growth. The minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) is the level of antimicrobic required to achieve inhibition against the tested pathogen. However, some AST systems calculate the MIC value by extrapolating growth curves and applying dedicated algorithms.


The Sensititre System generates true MIC results based on actual growth of the organism. A true MIC reveals the difference between whether a bacterial isolate is susceptible, how susceptible the organism is against a particular drug, and the exact breakpoint at which the isolate is considered resistant. When comparing our results against the latest clinical breakpoints from EUCAST and CLSI, you can trust the value of a true MIC to deliver the accuracy required to guide antibiotic usage decisions and to track emerging resistance.


¹ Åhman J, Matuschek E, Kahlmeter G. The quality of antimicrobial discs from nine manufacturers—EUCAST evaluations in 2014 and 2017. Clin Microbiol Infect. 2019; 25: 346-352. Full text

² Jayol A, Nordmann P, André C, Poirel L, Dubois V. Evaluation of three broth microdilution systems to determine colistin susceptibility of Gram-negative bacilli. J Antimicrob Chemother. 2018; 73: 1272-1278. PubMed

The Vizion Digital MIC Viewing System offers easy-to-read digital plate images, allowing users to easily read and record MIC results while eliminating the potential for manual reading errors.

“To be able to get an accurate measurement of MIC for very specific drugs like vancomycin, for me, is wonderfully valuable.”

Dr. James McKinnell

University of California

Los Angeles

“Sensititre plays a significant role in making our laboratory a recognized leader in providing accurate and timely microbiology services.”

References available on request

The latest antimicrobials

Access to AST testing with the most up-to-date antimicrobials can help clinicians make informed decisions for antibiotic usage to overcome infections. Due to its strong position in the AST field, Thermo Fisher Scientific maintains a continued and close collaboration with leading pharmaceutical companies developing new antimicrobials, including critical last-resort and novel therapies for multi-drug resistant infections. This collaboration allows early access to new drugs on both plates and discs, including standard and customized formats, giving you the flexibility to integrate them into your manual and/or automated workflow.

For example, our Gram-negative organism AST options include such recently approved antibiotics as cefiderocol, eravacycline, imipenem/relebactam, and meropenem/vaborbactam. Labs can confidently perform EUCAST- and CLSI-compliant susceptibility testing of multi-drug resistant Gram-negative isolates on a single plate, giving clinicians gold standard-level accurate results.³ Reduce offline testing, streamline workflow, and provide accurate MIC results with Sensititre AST plates in off-the-shelf standard formats.

³ International Organization for Standardization (ISO) (2019). Susceptibility testing of infectious agents and evaluation of performance of antimicrobial susceptibility test devices — Part 1: Broth micro-dilution reference method for testing the in vitro activity of antimicrobial agents against rapidly growing aerobic bacteria involved in infectious diseases. ISO 20776-1:2019. Introductory sections and portal

“Sensititre was one of the first to incorporate the broth microdilution D-test and cefoxitin screen, and the drug tigecycline on MIC panels, giving our lab immediate access to the latest antimicrobials.”

References available on request

Applicable across clinical, veterinary, and surveillance domains

After nearly 100 years of widespread antibiotic use, the threat posed by evolving bacterial resistance to common antibiotics has emerged as one of the most significant global health issues of the 21st century⁴. Antimicrobial resistance is present in every country, increases healthcare costs, and is accelerating due to the misuse and overuse of antibiotics in both people and animals.


Sensititre AST testing plates are exceptionally well positioned to provide insights into emerging resistance since they broadly cover all AST domains—human clinical, animal food production, companion animals, and surveillance. The same Sensititre technology and equipment generate ongoing new AST data across these domains, adding to understanding and facilitating rapid action by both clinicians and regulatory bodies to minimize resistance.

⁴ World Health Organization, 2014. Antimicrobial resistance Global report on surveillance

“The most important factors for our laboratory were availability of necessary drugs and appropriate dilution ranges. Sensititre MIC plates are accurate and able to detect emerging resistance."

References available on request

Expert system software

The Sensititre Software System, called SWIN, combines manual and automated read options on a single, robust software platform, to easily consolidate your test program and streamline data entry. The software is compatible with all Sensititre instruments and plates.


SWIN Software features a customizable expert system that provides three tiers of expert messages, including Information, Modification (based on FDA, CLSI, and EUCAST recommendations), and Warning Levels. It also includes a quality control module to easily manage MIC results and broth information for auditing purposes, and automated alerts and reports to enhance workflow and expedite release of results. Simple touchscreen navigation puts results at your fingertips while drop-down fields eliminate manual entry errors for all manual, semi-automated, and fully automated reads.

SWIN Software features a customizable expert system, a quality control module, automated alerts and reports, and simple touchscreen navigation.

The SWIN Epidemiology Module lets your laboratory create comprehensive reports specific to your patient populations as part of your AST and stewardship programs in just minutes.

Additionally, you can track and monitor local antibiotic resistance trends with the comprehensive reporting options in the SWIN Epidemiology Module. This module makes it easy to generate complete, real-time reports and bar graphs to support your antimicrobial stewardship program and surveillance of antimicrobial resistance patterns.

“After using SWIN for several months, we can honestly say we love it! It is very user-friendly. We really like the expert comments and the quality control package.”


“The SWIN Epidemiology platform allows us to quickly generate monthly and annual susceptibility reports. Prior to using the Sensititre SWIN Software, it took many hours to compile all of the necessary reports.”

References available on request

Custom AST plate development

If our extensive catalog of AST plates doesn’t quite fit your needs, feel free to design your own! Choose from more than 300 antimicrobials to design a Thermo Scientific Sensititre Custom Plate tailored to your formulary, dilution ranges, and patient population.


Through collaboration with many pharmaceutical companies, the Sensititre System gives you access to the latest antimicrobials and the ability to conveniently update formats. You get relevant results based on real-time resistance trends and local epidemiology, allowing you to improve clinical success and effectively manage antimicrobial resistance within your institution.


One key advantage of custom AST testing is the flexibility of choosing among more than 300 antimicrobials for clinical and veterinary applications, available in either frozen or dried format. Custom plates also allow you to consolidate multiple tests into one format to reduce unnecessary protocols. You can choose from a variety of automation options to streamline your workflow within your workload and budget requirements.


Designing a Sensitire custom plate consists of four simple steps as shown in the interactive graphic. Our team of microbiology experts will guide you through the process, from design to approval to order to delivery.

Choose antimicrobials and dilution ranges tailored to your formulary requirements and local patient or animal populations. 


Our team of microbiology experts will guide you through the Sensititre custom plate process from design to delivery: 

Custom plate designs are rigorously reviewed and approved based on quality and regulatory standards ensuring your plate meets your exact specifications and industry standards' guidelines.

Our team of microbiology experts will guide you through the Sensititre custom plate process from design to delivery: 

Following approval and receipt of a purchase order, your Sensititre custom plates will be scheduled for manufacture. The typical lead time for manufacture is 10-12 weeks.*
*Minimum order quantity may apply.


Our team of microbiology experts will guide you through the Sensititre custom plate process from design to delivery: 

Every custom plate comes complete with the required Thermo Scientific™ Sensititre™ SWIN™ Software script specific to your design to ensure results are reported with correct interpretive criteria. Plates may also be read manually subject to configuration.


Our team of microbiology experts will guide you through the Sensititre custom plate process from design to delivery: 

“The technology associated with Sensititre, as well as the ability to have custom plates, really make Sensititre a unique system.”


“We have added custom three-isolate plates for urinary isolates that better suit our formulary guidelines. I don’t believe any of the other AST/ID vendors would have been able to provide a custom product at our volumes, at the same price as other standard product.”

References available on request

Scalable AST automation across the workflow

Regardless of your laboratory size or testing volume, you can mix and match a variety of Sensititre manual, semi-automated, and fully automated options across the AST workflow. The workflow graphic shows the plates, instruments, and options at each step of the process, while the Sensititre introductory video illustrates their seamless integration into the workflow.

Sensititre SWIN Software serves as the glue that binds together these instruments and options. All the data generated within the Sensititre System, whether manual or automated, can be consolidated seamlessly in SWIN Software.

“We chose the Sensititre System because it provided us with the easiest setup options, best microbiology technology for accurate results, and the overall lowest cost per test.”

References available on request

Regulatory status varies by product and region. Please consult individual product pages.