Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

  • European Commission
  • Publications
  • Harmonization of techniques used in the microbiology examination of foods and drinking water, with emphasis on adequate recovery of injured cells


This publication presents the findings of a Round Table convened in Ispra on 26th October 1995 which brought together experts who participated in the Fifth International Symposium on Microbiology of Food and Cosmetics in Europe (Milan, 24-25 October 1995). Participants emphasized the importance of harmonization in this sector and laid the foundation for a specific study to elaborate and adopt reliable analytical methodologies enabling detection of the presence of viable but also injured microorganisms in food and drinking water. Food usually contains microorganisms that are metabolically or cytologically injured as a result of processing and handling methods (thermal treatment, refrigeration, freezing, drying and transradiation, preservatives, chemical treatment or low water activity). The same applies to drinking water where indicator microorganisms of sanitary significance and enteropathogenic bacteria become physiologically damaged owing to prevailing chemical (eg chlorination) and physical conditions. Injured cells are, generally, unable to grow on many customary selective media. This calls for the elaboration of suitable analytical methods to detect the injured microorganisms in various substrata in an attempt to avoid false negative responses in microbiological determinations, which can lead to serious hazards for consumers' health.

Additional information

Authors: JRC, JRC Ispra (IT)
Bibliographic Reference: EUR 16437 EN (1996) 22pp., FS
Availability: Available from the Public Relations and Publications Unit, JRC Ispra, I-21020 Ispra (IT), Fax: +39-332-785818
Follow us on: RSS Facebook Twitter YouTube Managed by the EU Publications Office Top