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Lab module overview

GIDEON’s Lab module is designed to meet the needs of microbiologists and students undertaking microbiology-related courses. It offers Bayesian analysis-driven pathogen identification facilities for 2000+ medically important bacteria, mycobacteria, and yeasts. These features are unique to GIDEON and cannot be found anywhere else.

GIDEON application: Lab module displayed on three different size devices

What’s inside?

The Lab module offers two ways to identify pathogens – Probability engine and Decision tree features. Both are available in light and dark modes.

Each Probability engine is tailored to the type of microbe being identified, according to their phenotypic and biochemical tests generally conducted in routine clinical laboratories.

GIDEON's Lab module displayed on three tablets


In 2021, GIDEON introduced interactive, guided decision trees. The feature is intended to help students create, download, and share dichotomous keys used in the classic ‘Unknown microbe’ undergraduate project. 

GIDEON's Lab module: decision tree displayed on a desktop, and two laptop screens

How does it work?

GIDEON’s Lab module is designed to help users identify all bacteria and yeasts associated with human disease. The database includes known or estimated incidence/prevalence rates for over 2,000 taxa, as well as the phenotypic characteristics used in their laboratory testing. Data are entered into a Bayesian matrix, which then lists all likely taxa in descending order of probability. Laboratory profiles of individual species can then be compared and analyzed.

Data are derived from all standard texts and journals through individual and electronic search. These data are upgraded continually, and phenotypic characteristics, new taxa, and classification are automatically refined in successive updates.


Identification limitations

The major problem in any identification program is the reliability of user input.

In some cases, the laboratory test profile entered by the user is not compatible with the organisms included in GIDEON.

This may reflect:

  • Inaccurate laboratory data
  • A mixed culture; or
  • A contaminant (e.g., fungus)

The Lab module is designed to identify and characterize medically important bacteria, mycobacteria, and yeasts.  The specification of parasites, viruses, and molds is based on a more complex array of tests that are beyond the scope of most clinical laboratories and are therefore not included in this module.


Altering output

While running the app, users may alter their listing of laboratory data. The flexible nature of data entry allows the user to consider, for example, “What if the organism in question were found to express pigment or ferment salicin?”

Changing or removing the phenotypic test answer will recalculate the list of likely pathogens.



Microbiological data change continuously. New taxa, tests, and nomenclature are constantly updated in GIDEON. Check out the latest updates to the database.



Case studies

Learn how Dr. Monika Oli engages her students by simulating outbreak scenarios.

Dr. Johnny El-Rady used GIDEON to move his Public Health and Pathogenic Microbiology classes online in just two weeks.

Fact sheet

10 ways GIDEON supports students