Product News: Key International Body Certifies High-Throughput Testing with QIAGEN’s Mericon® Salmonella Kit

26 Jul 2012

Today QIAGEN announced that its mericon® Salmonella spp. kit in combination with the QIAsymphony RGQ automation platform has received validation from the AOAC Research Institute, an independent third party organization that evaluates analytical methods for use in food safety and other testing.

The mericon® kit provides all necessary reagents for detection of Salmonella subspecies (or spp.) and runs on the QIAsymphony RGQ modular system, which automates entire workflows from food sample to the final result. The AOAC Research Institute validated the mericon® kit on QIAsymphony RGQ, as well as manual use, for low- and high-throughput testing of eight different food sample types. QIAGEN is exhibiting its technologies, including the Salmonella workflow, this week at the annual meeting of the International Association for Food Protection (IAFP) in Providence, Rhode Island.

“Achieving this validation of our QIAsymphony RGQ automated workflow in finding Salmonella, the most significant market opportunity in safeguarding food safety, adds further momentum to the dissemination of our instruments and test kits in the Applied Testing market. Our emerging food safety testing portfolio is very rapidly growing,” said Dr. Dietrich Hauffe, Senior Vice President, Life Sciences Business Area, of QIAGEN. “As a result of this key certification, food industry labs can now process more samples and improve efficiency by automating their Salmonella workflow using our mericon® Salmonella spp. kit with QIAsymphony RGQ. This certification marks an important milestone, as further key assays in our broad food testing assay portfolio are targeting certification and a growing number of labs are adopting the QIAsymphony RGQ platform.”

Sharon Brunelle, technical consultant for the AOAC Research Institute, said in a statement that QIAGEN “has demonstrated that the mericon workflow performs as well or better than the ISO reference method for selected foods, earning Performance Tested Method certification.” AOAC Research Institute is a wholly owned subsidiary of AOAC INTERNATIONAL (AOAC), an international standards developing organization with a membership of more than 3,000 laboratory scientists and officials. The AOAC Performance TestedSM certification has international recognition.

Salmonella is a common bacterium in nature that can cause serious illness when ingested in contaminated food, drink or water. More than 1 million people a year in the United States suffer gastrointestinal sickness from Salmonella, which normally goes away after a few days but can be dangerous to elderly or vulnerable patients, according to the Food and Drug Administration. One type of Salmonella causes typhoid fever, a life-threatening infection that can produce high fevers and damage to vital organs or joints. Left untreated, about one in 10 patients with the typhoidal infection will die. The FDA estimates 1,800 people a year in the U.S. contract typhoid fever.