Flow cytometry, combined with fluorescently labelled monoclonal antibodies, offers advantages of speed and sensitivity for the detection of specific pathogenic bacteria in foods. We investigated the detection of Salmonella typhimurium in eggs and milk. Using a sample clearing procedure, we determined that the detection limit was on the order of 103 cells per ml after a total analysis time of 40 min. After 6 h of nonselective enrichment, the detection limits were 10 cells per ml for milk and 1 cell per ml for eggs, even in the presence of a 10,000-fold excess of Escherichia coli cells.
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