Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

Isolating bacterial contaminants early on and effectively

Although bacterial contamination threatens the majority of food and pharmaceutical products worldwide, early detection of contaminants is extremely important if physical and financial losses are to be kept to minimum.
Isolating bacterial contaminants early on and effectively
Israeli researchers have devised a new technique suitable for the fast and accurate identification of bacterial contaminants in food, water and other materials. This innovative approach does not only identify bacterial presence but can provide a 'fingerprint' of the exact bacterial strain(s). Precise knowledge on the strain allows scientists to prepare effective strategies for epidemiological and preventative strategies and is therefore an extremely important tool.

Technologically, this new system is based on the ability to detect genotyping variations in specific bacterial genomic sequences thus resulting in a highly polymorphic genetic tool. This technological platform allows higher sensitivity and reproducibility, bringing overall costs down.

One of the advantages of this new system is the speed at which results can be obtained; test data can be available from one to three hours post testing. Current techniques required two to four days to produce final results. Further advantages include the ability to utilise this technology in a variety of settings, in order to detect contaminants in food, water, medical samples pharmaceuticals and other materials.

The originating research institute is now seeking to enter into development collaborations to further this technology. The aim is to fully develop it into an automated system for process-line testing and thus expand its application field. Laboratory prototypes are available for demonstration purposes and the technology already enjoys patent protection.
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