New Test Can Detect Salmonella In Food In Less Than An Hour

Apr 19, 2023

By Shyla Cadogan

 Researchers from McMaster University in Canada may have finally developed the solution to salmonella. Their new inexpensive rapid test can detect salmonella contamination in chicken and other foods and it’s even easier to use than a home COVID test.

“Using these tests is easier than using a COVID test, which so many people are already doing,” says co-author Carlos Filipe, chair of McMaster’s Department of Chemical Engineering, in a university release. “For this to be as effective and useful as possible, it has to be easy to use.”

The test can give results in an hour or less, without any fancy accessories or a power source. This is a huge step, considering lab culture monitoring takes at least a full day for results. Salmonella is one of the most common food-borne infections, causing 155,000 deaths each year around the world. Poultry producers could have a much easier job detecting it with a test like this one, especially given poultry products are a top source of infection. The test could also help ensure the safe processing of eggs, ground beef, and dairy products as well.

“Anyone can use it right in the setting where food is being prepared, processed or sold,” adds co-author Yingfu Li, a professor of Biochemistry and Chemical Biology who leads McMaster’s Functional Nucleic Acids Research Group. “There’s a balance between cost, convenience and need. If it’s cheap, reliable and easy, why not use it?”

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