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IFSTL Microbiology Courses Year-End Review

Here’s what you missed if you did not attend the hands-on microbiology courses at the International Food Safety Training Laboratory at JIFSAN in 2014…

This year, the International Food Safety Training Laboratory (IFSTL) introduced and delivered its first training on Rapid Methods in Food Microbiology, in addition to other popular trainings, such as Listeria in RTE Foods, Salmonella and Campylobacter in Foods, and Shiga-Toxin Producing E. coli in Foods.

Rapid Methods Course: In April, “Rapid Methods in Food Microbiology,” was taught by a team of instructors from the FDA, DC Public Health Laboratories, and the University of Maryland. Participants from Bangladesh, India, Indonesia, Malaysia and the US had the opportunity to interact with field technicians from 3M, BioMerieux, BioRad, DuPont, and Life Technologies (ThermoScientific).  The course emphasized the importance of rapid methods for screening of bacterial pathogens in foods using various molecular detection platforms.

Salmonella and Campylobacter Training Course in Malaysia: IFSTL instructors Dr. Angela Winslow and Dr. Janie Dubois travelled to Malaysia in June to teach a week-long course on the identification of Salmonella and Campylobacter in foods. This was the second microbiology training held in Malaysia as a part of JIFSAN’s partnership with the Ministry of Health in Malaysia.  Participants were taught FDA and USDA methods on the detection of Salmonella and Campylobacter in various food sources.

Methods for the Identification of Listeria monocytogenes: In early September, a three day accelerated course was offered on Listeria monocytogenes in food. The training included hands-on laboratory methods for the isolation, identification and verification of Listeria monocytogenes. This accelerated course focused on traditional culture methods and rapid methods, including Real-time PCR using the DuPont Bax Q7 system, as well as, BioRad iQ-Check.  The class also had the opportunity to tour the university dining services and experience first hand food safety practices in action.

Methods for the Identification of Salmonella and Campylobacter in Food: Also in September, this course, similar to the training delivered in Malaysia, consisted of hands on training on FDA and USDA methods for the detection of Salmonella and Campylobacter.   Participants had the opportunity to explore rapid detection methods from field technicians such as Christine Aleski (3M), John Bosland (BioMerieux), Tina Shaffer (DuPont), and Chen Wang (ThermoScientific).

Methods for the Identification of Shiga-toxin Producing E. Coli (STEC) in Foods: The year ended with our STEC training in October, which included instructors from the FDA and USDA, Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS).  The laboratory, with the assistance of Dr. Julie Kase and Anna Laasri, covered the screening for O157 STEC using the smart cycler, while Tina Shaffer (Dupont) reviewed the USDA screening method for non-O157 STEC using the BAX Q7 system.  The participants who completed this course travelled to IFSTL from Bangladesh, Qatar, Canada, Brazil, Korea, Namibia, Chile, Tanzania, and from the United States (California, Maryland, and New Jersey).

The IFSTL team would like to give a special thanks to all of our FDA and USDA instructors as well as our vendors from 3M, BioMerieux, BioRad, DuPont, and ThermoScientific.  We hope to see you in 2015 for an updated version of our existing trainings!

Check out our upcoming 2015 courses at http://ifstl.jifsan.umd.edu/upcomingClasses/ for more details and registration information.