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28 May 2014 Effects of food surface topography on phage-based magnetoelastic biosensor detection
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Phage-based magnetoelastic (ME) biosensors have proven useful in rapidly and inexpensively detecting food surface con- tamination. These biosensors are wireless, mass-sensitive biosensors and can be placed directly on food surfaces to detect the presence of target pathogens. Previously, millimeter-scale strip-shaped ME biosensors have been used to demonstrate direct detection of Salmonella Typhimurium on various fresh produce surfaces, including tomatoes, shell eggs, watermel- ons, and spinach leaves. Since the topography of these produce surfaces are different, and the biosensor must come into direct contact with Salmonella bacteria, food surfaces with large roughness and curvatures (e.g., spinach leaf surfaces) may allow the bacteria to avoid direct contact, thereby avoiding detection. The primary objective of this paper is, hence, to investigate the effects of food surface topography on the detection capabilities of the biosensors. Spinach leaf surfaces were selected as model surfaces, and detection experiments were conducted with differently sized biosensors (2 mm, 0.5 mm, and 150 μm in length). Spinach leaf roughness and curvatures of both adaxial (top) and abaxial (underside) surfaces were measured using a confocal laser scanning microscope. The experimental results showed that in spinach as the sen- sor was made smaller, the physical contact between the biosensors and bacteria were improved. Smaller sensors thereby enhance detection capabilities. When proper numbers of biosensors are used, micron-scale biosensors are anticipated to yield improved limits of detection over previously investigated millimeter-scale biosensors.
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Shin Horikawa, Yating Chai, Ruiting Zhao, Howard C. Wikle, and Bryan A. Chin "Effects of food surface topography on phage-based magnetoelastic biosensor detection", Proc. SPIE 9108, Sensing for Agriculture and Food Quality and Safety VI, 910802 (28 May 2014);

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