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False-Positive Fluorescence by Pink Salmon Tissue and Staphylococci in a Rapid Test for Escherichia coli

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Fluorescence from 4-methylumbelliferyl-β-D-glucuronide (MUG) hydrolysis is a common, rapid method for determining Escherichia coli in water and food. False-positive fluorescence occurred when either pink salmon fillets were tested or β-glucuronidase-positive Staphylococcus species were present in other fish products. Salmon fillet, E. coli, S. xylosus, and S. warneri produced 2, 17, 39, and 43 nmol of 4-methylumbelliferone per ml, respectively, in a one-step detection broth (lauryl salts tryptose broth with MUG) for E. coli after 48 h at 35°C. These false-positive reactions need to be considered when testing fish products, especially those contaminated through human handling.

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: University of Alaska Fairbanks Fishery Industrial Technology Center, 118 Trident Way, Kodiak, Alaska 99615-7401, USA

Publication date: September 1, 1998

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