Detection of Salmonella spp. from large volumes of water by modified Moore swabs and tangential flow filtration

Lett Appl Microbiol. 2013 Feb;56(2):88-94. doi: 10.1111/lam.12016. Epub 2012 Dec 3.


This study compares the use of tangential flow filtration (TFF), normal flow filtration and modified Moore swabs (MMS) for the concentration and detection of Salmonella, spiked at 1-760 CFU l(-1), from 10 l of surface water. Two immunomagnetic separation (IMS) methods, Pathatrix and Dynabeads, for further concentration of Salmonella were compared following filtration and overnight enrichment. Detection of Salmonella by PCR, qPCR or culture-based methods was compared. TFF and MMS preformed equally well in concentrating Salmonella. MMS was able to consistently concentrate Escherichia coli O157:H7 for culture-based detection; only at the higher concentrations tested was the TFF able to consistently concentrate E. coli O157:H7 for culture-based detection. Salmonella, at population densities <10 CFU l(-1) in 10 l of spiked surface water, could be reliably (6/6) detected within 2 days by combining TFF or MMS, with IMS Pathatrix and qPCR. The theoretical limit of detection for Salmonella is considered to be sufficiently sensitive to meet all the practical screening purposes for surface waters in an agricultural setting intended for application to edible horticultural crops.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Bacteriological Techniques / methods
  • Colony Count, Microbial
  • Escherichia coli O157 / isolation & purification
  • Filtration / methods*
  • Food Microbiology*
  • Immunomagnetic Separation / methods
  • Polymerase Chain Reaction / methods
  • Salmonella / isolation & purification*
  • Water / analysis*
  • Water Microbiology*


  • Water