Biosensor detects salmonella in food

A biosensor that relatively quickly detects even small amounts of salmonella in food has been developed by a group of researchers at the University of Missouri. This is a device designed especially for food producers to identify traces of salmonella in the most efficient way possible.

Currently, the tests that are used to understand if there is salmonella in food go back to cooking samples or extracting DNA to understand the presence of pathogens. These methods are accurate but unfortunately, they lose a lot of time (from one to five days), as pointed out by Mahmoud Almasri, professor of electrical and computer engineering at the College of Engineering of the aforementioned university, as well as one of the authors of the study.

The impedance-based microfluidic biosensor uses a specific fluid that can be mixed with food to detect the presence of salmonella bacteria, primarily those of salmonella B and D, both in raw foods and ready-to-eat foods. In a few hours, the duration of a worker’s shift, as is also emphasized in the press release, it is possible to know the presence of harmful bacteria.

“Our device will allow us to monitor and verify that food products are safe for consumers and to reduce the amount of food recalls that occur,” says Shuping Zhang, a professor at the Veterinary Medical Diagnostic Laboratory of the American University and another author of the study.