Innovation Anthology

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Program ID: Innovation Anthology #885
Program Date: 07/20/2017
Program Category: Agriculture, Alberta, Life sciences, Women in Science

Dr Linda Pilarski: Rapid Detection of E.Coli

Food safety is a big concern for processors.  E. Coli is just one pathogen that can cause outbreaks when people eat contaminated meat, or more recently, flour for baking.  

Testing can take several days to get results.

But Dr Linda Pilarski and her colleagues have developed new technology that cuts that time down to hours.

Dr. Linda PIlarski is a professor emeritus at the University of Alberta, and an expert in miniaturization.

DR LINDA PILARSKI    It's a really exciting new development ,  And it came about largely because Dr Cornelia Kreplin at Alberta Innovates Bio Solutions who brought myself and Lynn McMullen together, with Lynn McMullen being really interested in food safety and my lab being very involved in developing miniaturized technology to test for pathogens.  It was a marraige made in heaven. So we've just been able to do an enormous amount that allows for rapid and very, very sensitive testing for pathogens in a whole variety of kinds of foods. 

The testing device about the size of a loonie, and can check for contamination in several foods, from beef to peanut butter.  

Thanks today to Alberta Innovates

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