VIP-Safe Plus: LAMP-electrochemical sensor for detection of foodborne pathogens

Despite the existence of well-established food safety standards such as Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point (HACCP) and Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP), the incidences of foodborne outbreaks continue to be reported over the years both in Thailand and all over the world. Foodborne pathogens can be found in various types of food and it is crucial for food manufacturers to detect these pathogens to provide safe food products to their consumers. Thus, there is a need for rapid, specific and accurate diagnostic device for this important task.

A team of researchers from BIOTEC, NECTEC and Mahidol University, has developed  VIP-Safe Plus, a LAMP-electrochemical sensor for detection of foodborne pathogens. VIP-Safe Plus is a novel integrated Point-of-Care system for rapid, reliable and cost effective for detection of three foodborne pathogens namely, Vibrio cholerae, V. parahaemolyticus and Escherichia coli O157:H7. This alternative detection system combines the specificity and rapidity of loop-mediated isothermal amplification (LAMP), the sensitivity of disposable screen-printed graphene electrode-based electrochemical detection and the portability of the portable mini-potentiostat. Here is how the device works: the food sample requires 4 h for enrichment, 15 min for rapid DNA extraction and 45-60 min for amplification in heating block under isothermal condition, and 30 sec for measurement and result report. The results are reported on the LFD display on the portable mini-potentiostat. This method is faster than the conventional method which usually takes more than 18 hours. The detection limit is approximately 2 CFU/25 g of food materials. The high sensitivity and specificity, the relatively short analysis time are key advantages of VIP-Safe Plus.  This tool is useful not only for detecting contamination of pathogens in the food industry but also for monitoring outbreak of foodborne pathogens.


The key researchers responsible for this invention are Ms. Wansika Kiatpathomchai (BIOTEC), Dr. Adisorn Tuantranont (NECTEC) and Dr. Puey Ounjai (Mahidol University). It won the Platinum award at the 13th Taipei International Invention Show & Technomart (INST 2017) held in Taiwan from 28-30 September 2017, and was the only invention from outside Taiwan to win the top award at INST 2017.


Posted on 1 February 2018.