Foodborne Listeria monocytogenes: A Real Challenge in Quality Control

Scientifica (Cairo). 2016:2016:5768526. doi: 10.1155/2016/5768526. Epub 2016 Apr 30.


Listeria monocytogenes is a foodborne pathogen, and the detection and differentiation of this bacterium from the nonpathogenic Listeria species are of great importance to the food industry. Differentiation of Listeria species is very difficult, even with the sophisticated MALDI-TOF MS technique because of the close genetic relationship of the species and the usual gene transfer. The present paper emphasizes the difficulties of the differentiation through the standardized detection and confirmation according to ISO 11290-1:1996 and basic available L. monocytogenes detection methods and tests (such as API Listeria test, MALDI-TOF MS analysis, and hly gene PCR). With the increase of reports on the pathogenesis of atypical Listeria strains in humans, the significance of species level determination has become questionable, especially in food quality control, and the detection of pathogenic characteristics seems to be more relevant.