Peter Feng


Diagnostic methods for foodborne bacterial pathogens have changed dramatically in the past decade. Many systems previously used to analyze clinical specimens have been adapted for food analysis, and recent advances in biotechnology have introduced new technologies that can be applied to pathogen detections.Changes in Salmonella diagnostics are most evident because of the importance and worldwide prevalence of this foodborne pathogen.These new or modified methods for identifying Salmonella often use novel technologies and assay formats in combination with existing methodologies. In general, they may be classified into five types: new media formulations or modifications, miniaturized biochemical tests,nucleic acid-based assays, antibody-based assays, and automated or instrument systems. Most of these systems provide simpler and more rapid presumptive identification of Salmonella in foods. However, accuracy is often affected by the complexity and type of food analyzed. In this review, selected assays from each technology group are presented and some advantages and limitations of these novel systems are discussed.