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Development of an optimized method for the recovery of infectious F-RNA coliphage MS2 from meat

Jones, T.H., Muehlhauser, V., Croken, G. (2012). Development of an optimized method for the recovery of infectious F-RNA coliphage MS2 from meat, 185(1), 69-73. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jviromet.2012.06.003

Abstract

F-RNA coliphages, part of the gut flora and likely to be deposited on meat along with other enteric organisms during carcass dressing and processing, may be regarded as an indicator and/or surrogate for potential zoonotic enteric viruses. There is no recommended sampling method for viruses on meats and there is a lack of information on the attachment of enteric viruses or F-RNA coliphages to gauze swabs, cellulose sponges and muscle and fat tissue. The objective of this work was to optimize the recovery of MS2 from muscle and fat tissue of meat by comparing phosphate buffered saline (PBS), 10% beef extract pH 7.2, and tryptose phosphate (2.9%) glycine (6%) broth pH 9.5 as eluants. The sampling techniques of excision, swabbing with gauze or cellulose sponges were compared with homogenizing the inoculated entire muscle or fat surface area. The recovery of MS2 from cellulose sponges using beef extract was significantly higher (P= 0.001) than tryptose phosphate glycine broth which was significantly higher (P= 0.0001) than PBS. There was no significant difference in the recovery between tryptose phosphate glycine broth and beef extract (P= 0.92) and there was no significant difference between PBS and beef extract (P= 0.10) when MS2 was recovered from gauze. No significant differences were observed between the different eluants with muscle tissue (P= 0.91). When MS2 was recovered from muscle tissue with beef extract significant differences were observed (P= 0.002); the sampling techniques of homogenizing the entire sample (56%) was equal to excision (43%) (P= 0.23) and swabbing with a cellulose sponge (38%) (P= 0.06) which were significantly higher than swabbing with gauze (28%), a second grouping of means indicated that homogenizing the entire sample was significantly higher than the other three sampling techniques. When MS2 was recovered from fat, significant differences were observed (P= 0.000); homogenizing the entire sample (78%) was equal to excision (74%), which were significantly higher than swabbing with gauze (49%) or cellulose sponge (29%). The recovery of MS2 from meat is affected by the sampling technique. When choosing a nondestructive sampling method such as a cellulose sponge, a higher recovery can be obtained with beef extract as an eluant. © 2012.

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