VereFoodborne™

VereFoodborne™ is a nucleic acid-based, Lab-On-Chip (LOC) device which combines multiplex PCR and microarray hybridization to detect, differentiate and identify multiple foodborne Pathogens in one test.

Foodborne diseases are responsible for a wide range of illnesses and complications ranging from diarrheal diseases to various forms of cancer. Serious outbreaks of foodborne diseases have been documented in both developed and developing countries in the past decade, and the rate of illnesses are increasing significantly owing to the key factors of increased consumption of minimally processed food, the globalization of the food supply and the mass production and distribution of ready-to-eat food. In the United States alone, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that there are approximately 48 million cases of foodborne diseases, resulting in 128,000 hospitalizations and 3,000 deaths each year1.

Food safety is clearly a growing public health problem, and prompt actions to identify and contain foodborne illness outbreaks are needed to bring down the rate of foodborne illness and to protect public health. To date, current methodology to identify foodborne pathogens either for surveillance or to contain possible outbreaks requires much time and effort before they can be identified and this slows down the response time of health authorities, thus delaying efforts of treatment and containment.

To meet this need, Veredus offers a new solution: VereFoodborne™. This Lab-on-Chip application, together with the VerePLEX™ Lab-on-Chip platform, allows for rapid detection, differentiation and identification of major foodborne pathogens and is suitable for use even at point of need. This includes outbreak points, hospitals and food manufacturers.

Product Description:

VereFoodborne™ is a fast diagnostic test using the VerePLEX™ Biosystem Lab-on-Chip platform to simultaneously identify and differentiate all of the following major foodborne pathogens in one test. Including the shiga-like toxin-producing E. coli strain (STEC) which was responsible for the outbreak in North Germany.

1 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Estimates of Foodborne Illness in the United States. http://www.cdc.gov/foodborneburden/

For Research Use Only. Not for use in diagnostic procedures.

Detects multiple foodborne pathogens Multiple Probes (with duplicates) for:

  • Bacillus spp.
  • Campylobacter jejuni / lari / coli
  • Clostridium perfringens
  • Cronobacter sakazakii
  • Listeria spp.
  • Salmonella spp.
  • Escherichia coli
  • Shigella spp.
  • Staphylococcus aureus
  • Vibrio cholera
  • Vibrio parahaemolyticus
  • stx1A gene
  • stx2A gene

Process controls on each chip:

  • PCR: Positive and Negative Controls
  • Hybridization: Orientation and Hybridization Probes

Limit of Detection: 100 copies of extracted genomic DNA

Sample Types**: meat, fish, vegetables, milk, water, processed foods, stool or vomit sample

**Pre-enrichment culture is required for some sample types.

Technology

  • VereFoodborne™ chip combines time tested technologies of PCR and Microarray into a single platform. This allows specific, rapid and simultaneous identification of multiple foodborne pathogens
  • Fast sample to results compared to BAM method

Mobile

  • The VerePLEX™ Biosystem is designed to be portable for usage at areas such as checkpoints and borders

Comprehensive

  • Tests for selected generic and specific foodborne pathogens in a single assay

Easy to use

  • Open sample preparation protocol to accommodate different sample types
  • Easy workflow to fit into any existing laboratory setup
  • Software Diagnostic rules to eliminate any human subjectivity for microarray data analysis

Updates Available

  • Probes can be updated quickly to include new mutations of evolving  strains and ensure wider coverage of detection.
  • Multiplex amplification reactions
  • Multiple probes per target ensures reliable detection of subtypes in every test
  • Small sample volume requirement
  • Fast and programmable temperature ramp rate
  • Scalable for high throughput
  • PCR yield is comparable to standard thermal cyclers
  • 40% faster than conventional thermal cyclers
  • Functional validation of PCR is provided by an internal positive control
  • Functional validation of hybridization for each assay is provided by an internal positive hybridization control
  • Proprietary microfluidic interface: contact surfaces are biocompatible and do not inhibit the PCR reaction
  • Short time required for fluidic operations

The most recent notable outbreak was the E. coli O104:H4 outbreak that occurred in May 2011 in North Germany. The initial suspect for the cause of the outbreak was Spanish cucumbers and the German public was advised to avoid cucumbers, tomatoes and lettuces. Russia had banned the import of vegetables and produce from all EU countries. This led to a collapse in the produce industry.

It was later found that the cause was not the cucumbers but rather sprouts which their seeds were imported, sprouted and distributed around North German including the Kartoffelkeller restaurant in Lübeck. But by then, 18 of the restaurant customers had become ill, 1 was on kidney dialysis, 1 had died and 2 others had Hemolytic Uremic Syndrome (HUS). According to CDC, as of 5 July 2011 (within 1 month) of the outbreak there were 852 patients with HUS in Germany – and 32 deaths associated with HUS. France also had an outbreak due to sprouts produced locally in Bordeaux. The European Food Safety Authority finally issued a report identifying a single lot of fenugreek seeds, from an exporter in Egypt as the most likely source of the sprouts linked with the outbreaks in Germany and France.

In solving this case, authorities needed a means to rapidly conduct investigative screening of potential pathogens as well as confirmation of presumptive samples.

To meet this need, Veredus offers a new solution: VereFoodborne™. This Lab-on-Chip application allows for rapid detection, differentiation and identification of major foodborne pathogens and is suitable for use even at point of need. This includes outbreak points, hospitals and food manufacturers.

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