Title: Development of a reference material for Staphylococcus aureus enterotoxin A in cheese: Feasibility study, processing, homogeneity and stability assessment
Citation: FOOD CHEMISTRY vol. 168 p. 241-246
Publication Year: 2015
JRC N°: JRC88997
ISSN: 0308-8146
URI: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0308814614011042
DOI: 10.1016/j.foodchem.2014.07.066
Type: Articles in periodicals and books
Abstract: Staphylococcal food poisoning is caused by ingestion of enterotoxins which are excreted into foods by some strains of coagulase positive staphylococci, mainly Staphylococcus aureus. To protect consumers, Commission Regulation 1441/2007 specifies thresholds for the presence of these toxins in foods such as cheeses. In addition, the reference method to be applied for detection is defined (extraction, dialysis concentration, immunochemical toxin detection). In order to enforce legislation, it is indispensable to have suitable quality assurance tools such as reference materials (RMs) available to implement and safeguard reliable measurements. Anses and IRMM collaborate to develop a RM for Staphylococcal enterotoxin A (SEA) in cheese. First a feasibility study was conducted to establish a suitable processing procedure for producing large quantities of homogeneous and stable cheese powders. Three types of materials were made, and the following one proved to be most suitable: the blank material was prepared by cutting, grinding, freeze-drying, milling and mixing. For the spiked material, the cheese was converted into a slurry, spiked with a solution of SEA, freeze-dried, mixed, and diluted with blank material to the target SEA concentration level. Thereafter, large batches of three materials (blank, very low contaminated, low contaminated) were processed, and the materials' homogeneity and short-term stability were assessed using the reference method. The materials showed to be sufficiently homogeneous for the intended used, and storage at +18 ºC for 4 weeks did not indicate any detectable material degradation. These results provide the basis for the development of a RM for SEA in cheese.
JRC Directorate:Health, Consumers and Reference Materials

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