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Genome sequencing helps track US food poisoning outbreak

Genome sequencing helps track US food poisoning outbreak

| April 8, 2016

A recently published study led by scientists from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has used whole genome sequencing (WGS) to investigate a strain of Vibrio parahaemolyticus responsible for an outbreak of food poisoning in 2010. The outbreak occurred in Maryland and affected at least two people. The outbreak was soon linked to raw […]

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Research reveals PulseNet value

Research reveals PulseNet value

| March 18, 2016

Newly published research in the USA has shown that the PulseNet laboratory network, which shares the genetic fingerprints of foodborne pathogen isolates, is preventing around 276,000 cases of foodborne illness every year. This equates to annual savings of $507 million on medical bills and lost productivity. The research, led by economist Robert L. Scharff from […]

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Flock behavioural changes could signal Campylobacter infection in chickens

Flock behavioural changes could signal Campylobacter infection in chickens

| January 8, 2016

A study by scientists at Oxford University’s Department of Zoology has discovered that a new technique to monitor the movement of chickens may be able to predict which flocks are at risk of infection with Campylobacter. Campylobacter is the main cause of foodborne disease in humans in Europe and North America and a major reservoir […]

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Salmonella survives for months in low moisture foods

Salmonella survives for months in low moisture foods

| January 5, 2016

A newly published study by microbiologists at the University of Georgia in the USA has discovered that cells of the bacterial pathogen Salmonella are able to survive for much longer than expected in commercial food products with low water activities. The researchers looked at cookie and cracker snack sandwich products containing a variety of low […]

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Colistin resistance gene found in bacteria in Denmark

Colistin resistance gene found in bacteria in Denmark

| December 8, 2015

A new Danish study, by the National Food Institute, Technical University of Denmark and the Statens Serum Institut, has reported the discovery of bacteria containing the mcr-1 gene, which confers resistance to the antibiotic colistin, in imported food samples. The researchers carried out the study in response to recent findings from China identifying the mcr-1 […]

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Discovery of bacterial gene for colistin resistance causes concern

Discovery of bacterial gene for colistin resistance causes concern

| November 26, 2015

Newly published findings by a team of researchers in China describe the discovery of a plasmid-mediated mechanism in E. coli isolated from pigs that confers resistance to colistin – widely regarded as an antibiotic of last resort for treating drug resistant infections. The researchers discovered the mechanism during a surveillance project looking at antibiotic resistance […]

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Some commercial coffees found to contain high mycotoxin levels

Some commercial coffees found to contain high mycotoxin levels

| November 3, 2015

A study carried out at the University of Valencia in Spain has confirmed the presence of mycotoxins in samples of coffee on retail sale in supermarkets around the city. Five samples contained ochratoxin A at concentrations in excess of maximum permitted levels. The researchers used a technique called liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS) to […]

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Phage treatment could control pathogen in infant formula

Phage treatment could control pathogen in infant formula

| November 3, 2015

Researchers at Seoul National University, South Korea, have identified a bacteriophage (a virus that infects bacteria) that is active against Cronobacter sakazakii – a potentially serious bacterial pathogen sometimes associated with infant formula. The Korean research team, led by Professor Sangryeol Ryu, studied the antibacterial activity of a phage called “CR5” in infant formula inoculated […]

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Study identifies Listeria risk in caramel apples

Study identifies Listeria risk in caramel apples

| October 21, 2015

A newly published study by researchers at the University of Wisconsin-Madison Food Research Institute in the USA has found that Listeria monocytogenes is able to grow on unrefrigerated caramel apples that have had wooden sticks inserted into the apple. The study was carried out in response to a fatal outbreak of listeriosis in 2014 that […]

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Phone app allows covert observation of food handler practices

Phone app allows covert observation of food handler practices

| October 6, 2015

Researchers at the Penn State College of Agricultural Sciences in the USA have developed and evaluated a new smartphone application designed to help researchers conduct concealed observations of food safety practices in food handling environments. The app was designed to help minimise the so-called Hawthorne Effect, where people make changes to their behaviour in response […]

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