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Detection of Staphylococcal Enterotoxin B (SEB) by Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay and by a Rapid Hand-Held Assay by Ulrich Schotte, Norbert Langfeldt, Anne H. Peruski and Hermann Meyer

Staphylococcal enterotoxins are a frequent cause of food poisoning. Immunologically-based assays for the detection of staphylococcal enterotoxins are commercially available, but require at minimum of 3 hours. We used staphylococcal enterotoxin B to compare two commercially available assays with a newly developed rapid immunochromatographic-based hand-held assay. The detection limit of the commercially available assays accounted for 500 pg and 100 pg enterotoxin B/mL, respectively, whereas 50 pg enterotoxin B/mL were detected within 15 min using the hand-held assay. Enterotoxin B-spiked custard seryed as a model to detect staphylococcal enterotoxin in food. Depending on the extraction method applied, the detection limit was in the range of 500 pg to 2500 pg/g custard for the commercially available assays and 62.5 pg/g for the hand-held assay. We conclude that the handheld assay is widely applicable because it is sensitive, specific with regard to the tested enterotoxins, and the results can be read with the naked eye. (Clin. Lab.2002;48:395-400)

DOI: Clin. Lab. 2002;48:395-400