Company: Hygiena

Technology Snapshot: Hygiena has announced the NEW BAX System Real-Time PCR Assay for E. coli O157:H7 Exact, a test that can specifically identify Escherichia coli O157:H7 bacteria (and not similar serotypes) in less time than other tests.

The BAX® technology is based on the polymerase chain reaction (PCR) method of amplifying minute amounts of genetic material in a sample for more accurate measurement. The new BAX® System Real-Time Assay for E. coli O157:H7 Exact is based on a single genetic target in E. coli O157:H7, providing a definitive result for immediate action and minimizes the need for additional confirmatory testing.

Improved chemistry in the new assay allows detection as low as 104 colony forming units (CFU/mL) in an enriched sample, opening the door to reduced enrichment times and faster time to results for quicker product release.

The assay can be run simultaneously with the BAX System Real-Time PCR assay suite for STEC, including the BAX System Real-Time STEC screening assay, and BAX System Real-Time PCR assays for STEC Panel 1 and STEC Panel 2.

Hygiena’s validation testing of the BAX System Real-Time PCR Assay for E. coli O157:H7 Exact in raw ground beef, beef trim, leafy greens and raw milk showed no significant differences in results compared to the reference conventional culture confirmation method. In addition, the test successfully identified 239 strains of E. coli O157:H7 and did not identify 300 non-O157:H7 strains or 175 non-E. coli bacteria.

“We are so excited to introduce this new assay to the BAX System! This assay will dramatically improve the accuracy and speed of testing for E. coli O157:H7, providing the industry a needed tool for product release,” said April Englishbey, PhD., product manager at Hygiena. “We are confident that this assay’s ability for improved results in a variety of tough matrices will help improve the safety of food supply chains.”