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      Development of sensitive and specific multiplex PCR method for the detection of microcystin producing cyanobacteria in spirulina food supplements

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          Abstract

          Spirulina has emerged as the next-generation dietary supplement owing to its health benefits. Despite the advantages, there have been reports of contamination by cyanotoxins such as microcystins that can adversely affect human health. Hence, there is a need to develop a robust, efficient, and cost-effective method to detect microcystin-producing cyanobacteria in these food supplements. In this study, we have demonstrated a multiplex polymerase chain reaction (PCR) method for identification of microcystin-contamination in spirulina dietary supplements. This method involves simultaneous amplification of phycocyanin and microcystin B encoding genes ( pcb, mcyB). The sensitivity of the multiplex PCR was assessed, and the limit of detecting mcyB along with pcb was found to be 250 fg/µL. The presence of microcystin was detected in five out of seven fish food supplements indicating poor culture conditions. Hence, rigorous quality control is required for monitoring the spirulina food supplements.

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          Author and article information

          Contributors
          ramya.m@ktr.srmuniv.ac.in
          Journal
          Food Sci Biotechnol
          Food Sci. Biotechnol
          Food Science and Biotechnology
          Springer Singapore (Singapore )
          1226-7708
          2092-6456
          21 September 2018
          April 2019
          : 28
          : 2
          : 609-614
          Affiliations
          ISNI 0000 0004 0635 5080, GRID grid.412742.6, Department of Genetic Engineering, , SRM Institute of Science and Technology, ; Kattankkulathur, Kancheepuram District, Tamil Nadu 603203 India
          Article
          PMC6431305 PMC6431305 6431305 476
          10.1007/s10068-018-0476-0
          6431305
          30956874
          © The Korean Society of Food Science and Technology and Springer Science+Business Media B.V., part of Springer Nature 2018
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          Article
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          © The Korean Society of Food Science and Technology 2019

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