Molecular Detection of Foodborne Bacterial Pathogens

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The PCR has come a long way since its discovery, evolving from a tool used mainly in forensic, medical, pharmaceutical, and plant sciences to food science and the food industry. It may be one of the most remarkable discoveries of the 20th century and has opened new doors in a wide array of fields that would never have been possible prior to its utilization. Although research have shown that PCR can be a powerful method for detection of foodborne pathogens in pure culture as well as in certain foods, much more work needs to be done to truly make it the best alternative detection technique to conventional cultural methods. Until the enrichment steps can be eliminated, the rapidity of PCR assays can still be argued. Foods also are so different in their composition, resulting in a multitude of compounds that may be inhibitory to the detection of some pathogens while not affecting others, thus making it more challenging to design a one-size-fits-all PCR assay for foods.