SBIR Phase I: A Rapid Foodborne Pathogen Analyzer

Period of Performance: 01/01/2012 - 12/31/2012


Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Real-time Analyzers
362 Industrial Park Road Suite #8
Middletown, CT 06457
Principal Investigator, Firm POC


This Small Business Innovation Research Phase I project will demonstrate feasibility by developing a novel sampling system to detect 103-4 cfu/g Salmonella typhimurium in spinach within 2 hours. Foodborne diseases resulting from Campylobacter, Escherichia, Listeria, Salmonella, Shigella and Vibrio species affect as many as 76 million persons in the United States each year, resulting in 325,000 hospitalizations and nearly 5,000 deaths. Unfortunately, current methods used to detect these pathogens rely on lengthy growth enrichment steps that take 1 to 4 days, negating effective prevention of contaminated food distribution and consumption. During the Phase II project, a prototype Foodborne Pathogen Analyzer will be developed to extract, detect, identify, and quantify the presence of the above listed pathogens in a variety of food matrices in 1 to 2 hours at the required sensitivity (e.g. 1-100 cfu/g). The broader/commercial impacts of this research are 1) to detect pathogens in or on food in 1-2 hours, hence preventing the distribution and consumption of contaminated food, 2) to speed the process of identifying the source of an outbreak, helping minimize illnesses and deaths, and 3) to allow developing similar systems that can detect bioagents in support of the military and homeland security, and other infectious pathogens in support of medical diagnosis (e.g. detection of MRSA, HIV, TB).