Top Story: Test for E. Coli

Professor Lisa Mauer

Lisa Mauer uses infrared spectroscopy for rapid detection of select microbial foodborne contaminants.

Test finds E. coli in beef faster,
could better trace outbreaks

September 2, 2010

Infrared spectroscopy can detect E. coli faster than current testing methods and can cut days off investigations of outbreaks, according to a study at Purdue University.

Lisa Mauer, an associate professor of food science, detected E. coli in ground beef in one hour using Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, much less than the 48 hours required for conventional plating technology, which requires culturing cells in a laboratory. Mauer said spectroscopy could be done in the same laboratories, just in much less time.

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