Salmonella is a diverse genus of Gram-negative bacilli and a major foodborne pathogen responsible for more than a million illnesses annually in the United States alone. Rapid, reliable detection and identification of this pathogen in food and environmental sources is key to safeguarding the food supply. Traditional microbiological culture techniques have been the ‘gold standard’ for State and Federal regulators. Unfortunately, the time to result is too long to effectively monitor foodstuffs, especially those with very short shelf lives. Advances in traditional microbiology and molecular biology over the past 25 years have greatly improved the speed at which this pathogen is detected. Nonetheless, food and environmental samples possess a distinctive set of challenges for these newer, more rapid methodologies. Furthermore, more detailed identification and subtyping strategies still rely heavily on the availability of a pure isolate. However, major shifts in DNA sequencing technologies are meeting this challenge by advancing the detection, identification and subtyping of Salmonella towards a culture-independent diagnostic framework. This review will focus on current approaches and state-of-the-art next-generation advances in the detection, identification and subtyping of Salmonella from food and environmental sources.
© 2016 The Authors. Microbial Biotechnology published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd and Society for Applied Microbiology.