Researchers Develop Novel Technique to Detect Salmonella

by VR Sreeraman on  February 5, 2009 at 12:12 PM Research News   - G J E 4
 Researchers Develop Novel Technique to Detect Salmonella
Researchers from Iowa State University have developed a novel technique to detect salmonella, bacteria that causes foodborne illnesses.

The process, developed by Byron Brehm-Stecher, assistant professor in food science and human nutrition, and his graduate student Bledar Bisha, begins with testing the food, in most cases produce, with a strip of adhesive tape.

The tape is applied to the produce, then carefully removed, taking a sample of whatever is on the skin of the produce.

That sample is then put on a slide and soaked in a special warm, soapy mixture that contains a genetic marker that binds with salmonella and gives off a fluorescent glow when viewed under an ultraviolet light.

The approach called Fluorescent In-Situ Hybridization, or FISH can tell investigators if the produce is contaminated with salmonella in about two hours.

"This method is rapid, it's easy, and it's cheap," said Brehm-Stecher.

Presently, the methods of detecting salmonella take one to seven days.

"I think this will be good tool in outbreak investigation and routine surveillance especially since all you need is tape, a heat block, a small centrifuge and a fluorescence microscope," said Brehm-Stecher.

"It has the potential to be very portable," he added.

The study is published in the journal Applied and Environmental Microbiology.

Source: ANI

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