Saturday April 20, 2019

Researchers Develop New Test To Detect E.coli in Food Quickly

The kit has been approved by Health Canada and translated for commercial use

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Poultry, Produce Industry
Over 80% of UTIs caused by E.coli is found in poultry. Pixabay

Researchers have developed a novel testing kit that can detect Escherichia coli (E.coli) — a deadly pathogen — much more quickly than existing methods.

The kit detects E. coli 0157, commonly found in ground meat, and is considered more likely to cause severe illnesses than other forms of the bacteria.

The test detects a protein unique to the pathogenic E. coli bacteria and shows results in hours rather than days.

“Our goal is to get the testing to occur as close as possible to the source,” Michael Rieder, Professor at the University of Western Ontario in Canada, said in a statement on Friday.

“This technology is not only faster, but it’s less expensive, it’s easy to use, and it can occur right in the processing plant.”

Food samples to be tested are incubated for a few hours. A sample is then placed on a pad. After 15 minutes, the pad displays one red line to show it worked properly – and a second if the sample contains E. coli O157, the CTV reported.

New test to detect E. coli in food quickly. Pixabay

“It’s very much like a pregnancy test,” Rieder was quoted as saying.

Current food testing methods typically rely on culture, which requires samples to be sent away for testing, with results taking up to two weeks to come back. By that time, the food has often been shipped to markets and large recalls have to occur.

The quicker testing ensures that results are received long before contaminated products make it to the market, thus reducing the risk to the public and the need for large-scale food recalls.

“We are looking at this specific biomarker because it is unique to this pathogenic bacteria.The presence of bacteria itself isn’t bad, but we want to be able to identify specific bacteria that will cause people to get sick,” Rieder said.

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“The goal is a safer food chain for everyone so that public safety can be assured.”

The kit has been approved by Health Canada and translated for commercial use. (IANS)

Next Story

 Study Claims, Men With A Diet Rich in Meat At Greater Risk of Death

The findings highlight the need to investigate the health effects of protein intake, especially in people who have a pre-existing chronic medical condition. 

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food
"These findings should not be generalised to older people who are at a greater risk of malnutrition and whose intake of protein often remains below the recommended amount," said Heli Virtanen, a postdoctoral candidate from the University of Eastern Finland. Pixabay

Men with a diet rich in animal protein and meat such as sausages and cold cuts could be at a greater risk of death, finds a study.

The study found men who favoured animal protein over plant-based protein in their diet had a 23 per cent greater risk of death than men whose diet was more balanced in terms of their sources of protein.

diabetes
The findings highlight the need to investigate the health effects of protein intake, especially in people who have a pre-existing chronic medical condition. Pixabay

In addition, a high overall intake of dietary protein was associated with a greater risk of death in men who had been diagnosed with Type-2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease or cancer.

However, a similar association was not found in men without these diseases, said the study, published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

beef
The study found men who favoured animal protein over plant-based protein in their diet had a 23 per cent greater risk of death than men whose diet was more balanced in terms of their sources of protein. Pixabay

“These findings should not be generalised to older people who are at a greater risk of malnutrition and whose intake of protein often remains below the recommended amount,” said Heli Virtanen, a postdoctoral candidate from the University of Eastern Finland.

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The findings highlight the need to investigate the health effects of protein intake, especially in people who have a pre-existing chronic medical condition.

For the study, the researchers included approximately 2,600 Finnish men aged between 42 and 60. (IANS)