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Evaluation of the International Reference Methods NF EN ISO 11290-1 and 11290-2 and an In-House Method for the Isolation of Listeria monocytogenes from Retail Seafood Products in France

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Retail seafood products were analyzed on their use-by date using the international reference methods NF EN ISO 11290-1 and 11290-2 (collectively method R) or an in-house method (method B) for the isolation of Listeria monocytogenes. The sensitivity of the methods was about 78%. Method R detected more positive samples of smoked salmon and herb-flavored slices of smoked salmon than did method B, whereas the reverse was true for samples of carpaccio-like salmon, herb-flavored slices of raw salmon, and smoked trout. Most products produced a positive result after the first of two enrichments, and little difference was observed after changing the isolation medium (Listeria selective agar, L. monocytogenes blood agar, agar for Listeria according to Ottaviani and Agosti, Oxford agar, and Palcam agar). L. monocytogenes was isolated from 151 (27.8%) of the 543 samples, with concentrations mostly below 100 CFU/g. The pathogen prevalence and concentration in these seafood products varied greatly depending on the producer and the nature of the product. In certain cases, these differences could be explained by problems in cleaning and disinfection operations in the food-processing environment. The identities of L. monocytogenes isolates were confirmed by PCR, and isolates were characterized by random amplification of polymorphic DNA and pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE). PFGE patterns obtained with the enzymes ApaI and AscI produced 26 different pulsotypes. In general, different pulsotypes were present in the different categories of seafood products and were not specific to one producer. The genetic diversity observed in the products was not related to the prevalence found at the manufacturing site. It is therefore important for producers to determine the source(s) of contamination of their product so the risks linked to the presence of L. monocytogenes can be reduced.

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Agence Française de Sécurité Sanitaire des Aliments, Laboratoire d'Etudes et de Recherches sur les produits de la peche, Boulogne sur Mer, France

Publication date: 2007-04-01

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