Available for licensing and commercial development is a novel, disposable infrared (IR)-transparent, microporous, plasma treated polyethylene hydrophilic membrane, as well as methods for making and using this membrane to identify bacterial and other micoorganism impurities in food using IR spectroscopy. Further applications include: filtering dilute aqueous bacterial suspensions, and growing bacterial colonies when the PE membrane is placed over an agar medium and incubated. The patent also describes a novel high-throughout technique, as an alternative to manual filtration, where the PE membrane is used for microarray printing of intact microorganisms in pre-enriched medium on the treated PE substrate. Furthermore, the invention relates to a method of detecting mixtures of food-borne pathogens E. sakazakii and K. pneumonia, by using the treated PE membranes. Because this unique membrane is transparent to infrared light, isolated microcolonies of bacterial cells grown on this PE substrate can be fingerprinted directly by IR microspectroscopy, followed by multivariate analysis for the identification of the pathogens. The method can be applied to other cell types as well.
This novel membrane and its applications offer an advantage over existing tests in that it can be used to rapidly identify presumptive pathogen colonies, and can be used in screening tests for a large number of pathogens, as well as various microorganisms and cell types. It can also be used to isolate microorganisms from aqueous suspensions as well as spores, including airborne ones.
Bill Ronnenberg, JD-MIP, MS
FDA Technology Transfer Program
10903 New Hampshire Ave.
Building WO1, Rm 4214
Silver Spring, MD 20993
OTT Reference No: E-174-2005/0
Updated: August 6, 2015