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Near on-line detection of enteric bacteria using lux recombinant bacteriophage

Chandra P. Kodikara, Hilary H. Crew, Gordon S.A.B. Stewart
DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1574-6968.1991.tb04474.x 261-265 First published online: 1 October 1991


The potential for a revolution in microbiol testing can be perceived with the near on-line detection of indicator microorganisms. By definition, these are microorganisms present in significant numbers within a food which, while not pathogenic, can be related through increasing count to the increased probability of pathogen contamination. We have used recombinant lux+ bacteriophage to detect enteric indicator bacteria without recovery or enrichment in 50 min, provided that they are present at levels greater than 104 g−1 or cm−2. After a 4-h enrichment, samples having enteric counts of 10 g−1 or cm−2 can be distinguished from background.

Key words
  • Bioluminescence
  • Bacteriophage
  • Enteric bacteria
  • Bacterial detection

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