- Health diseases due to the ingestion of water or food contaminated with pa- thogenic microorganisms are a main health problem around the world. The traditional methods for detecting foodborne pathogens are time-consuming (on the order of days). The development of methods that can help to detect and identify foodborne pathogens with high sensitivity and specificity have been proposed to overcome the limitations of traditional methods. Accordingly, this research is focused on the development of an experimental protocol for a high- sensitivity detection and quantification of bacterial pathogens with reduced detection times. This will lead to the development of a portable and low-cost technology with the opportunity to make onsite detection of pathogenic spe- cies. The proposed approach has modified the route reported in the literature; the method proposed is expected to be sensitive enough to detect a low limit of 102 CFU/mL counts of bacteria. The fluorescence-based method was tested in presence of Salmonella typhimurium (ATCC 14020) and Escherichia coli (ATCC 25922). CdSe water-soluble quantum dots (QDs) were synthesized in aqueous phase in presence of thioglycolic acid (TGA) as a capping agent. As- synthesized QDs were characterized by x-ray diffraction, near infrared and Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, UV–Vis and photoluminescence techniques. Results of the CdSe/TGA-bacteria coupling and the determination of the corresponding quantification profiles (calibration curves) will be pre- sented and discussed.