New Salmonella detection
kit is highly sensitive, claim developers
of Article: http://www.foodproductiondaily.com/Quality-Safety/New-Salmonella-detection-kit-is-highly-sensitive-claim-developers
By Jane Byrne, 23-Mar-2009
A detection kit for the presence of
the deadly strain Eschericia coli 0157:H7, Salmonella and Staphyloccoccus
aureaus provides definitive results and does not need confirmatory
tests, claim its developers.
Crop Biotech Update reports that researchers
from the National Institute of Molecular Biology and Biotechnology
(BIOTECH), at the University of the Philippines Los Baños (UPLB) have
developed a DNA Amplification System (DAS) kit that is a pathogen
specific, accurate and highly sensitive system.
The system utilizes polymerase chain reaction
(PCR) technology, continued the researchers.
They maintain that the kit, the development of
which was part funded by the Philippines Department of Science and
Technology, can be utilized by the food industry as well as government
regulatory agencies, health institutions and quarantine and service
According to the scientists, their technology is
based on the principal that after binding to very specific primers, small
fragments of the DNA segments of the pathogenic microorganisms are
amplified into million-fold copies, thus allowing for the detection
of the presence of the pathogenic microorganism.
Last week, the product developers provided
training to food manufacturers as well as other sectors on the use of the
Faster time-to-results urged
Meanwhile, diagnostic test consultant and
Strategic Consulting president, Tom Weschler, recently told
FoodProductionDaily.com that greater speed in pathogen detection within
processing plants rather than a reliance on enhanced regulation is the
key to reducing product contamination from pathogens such as Salmonella.
Last month, the Peanut Corporation of
America (PCA) filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy after the Food and Drug
Administration (FDA) found it had knowingly shipped peanut products
tainted with a salmonella
strain that was linked to at least 677 reported illnesses and nine deaths.
Official court documents listed more than 475
businesses with claims against the PCA, including processors,
manufacturers and growers, far more than the company’s own estimate of
100-199 creditors when it filed for bankruptcy on February 12.
“There is an immediate need for detection kits
that shorten the time-to-result for food processors to help them take
corrective measures much faster at production line level, while ensuring
that retailers and consumers still get their products in the fastest time
possible,” claims Weschler.
He added that improvements in sampling
concentration methods by microbiology technology manufacturers would make
it easier and less time consuming to determine pathogen presence in food
Following on from the peanut outbreak, the FDA
recommended that manufacturers only use suppliers that have proven that
they adhere to good manufacturing practices.
However, if 'questions have been raised
concerning the potential presence of salmonella,' or if no such
information is available, the agency urges manufacturers to ensure their
own practices would reduce any presence of salmonella to below levels
where it would pose a health risk.
In its guidance to food processors, the FDA also
notes that although salmonella is generally destroyed by heat, salmonella
in peanut products, which have low moisture content, is much more
heat-resistant, and therefore requires considerable expertise to
guarantee that foods are adequately treated.