PCR experion automated electrophoresis system to detect Lysteria monocytogenes in food.

Angelo Minucci, Massimo Castagnola, Ettore Domenico Capoluongo, Elisabetta Delibato, Antonietta Gattuso, Bruna Auricchio, Dario De Medici, Laura Toti, Monica Virginia Gianfranceschi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Listeria monocytogenes is frequently found as a contaminant in raw and ready-to-eat foods. The ability of L. monocytogenes to multiply at refrigeration temperatures and to grow in a wide range of pH values is of particular concern for food safety. According to the European Union regulation on microbiological criteria for foodstuffs, L. monocytogenes must be absent in some categories of ready-to-eat foods. The standard microbiological method for L. monocytogenes detection in foods (ISO 11290-1: 1996 (ISO, International Organization for Standardization)) is cost and time consuming. Developments of rapid, cost-effective and automated diagnostic methods to detect food-borne pathogens in foods continue to be a major concern for the industry and public health. The aim of this study was the development of a rapid, sensitive and specific molecular detection method for L. monocytogenes. To this purpose, we have applied a capillary electrophoresis method to a PCR protocol (PCR-EES (EES, experion automated electrophoresis system)) for detecting L. monocytogenes in food. In particular, a microfluidic chip-based automated electrophoresis system (experion automated electrophoresis system, Bio-Rad Laboratories, USA) was used for the rapid and automatic analysis of the amplicons. Fifty naturally contaminated samples were analysed with this method and the results were compared with those obtained with ISO method. Moreover, the microfluidic chip-based automated electrophoresis system was compared with classical gel electrophoresis (PCR-CGE). The results showed that after 24 h of culture enrichment, the PCR-EES showed a relative accuracy of 100% with ISO, while using PCR-CGE decreased it down to 96%. After 48 h of enrichment, both PCR-EES and PCR-CGE showed an accuracy of 100% with ISO.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3817-3821
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Separation Science
Publication statusPublished - 2009


  • PCR
  • electrophoresis
  • monocytogenes


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