Analysis of specific nucleic acids in food allows control laboratories to determine the presence or absence of certain ingredients in complex products or the identification of specific characteristics of single food components. These analyses are based on nucleic acids probes, including the polymerase chain reaction (PCR), which made the detection of minute amounts of degraded nucleic acids and their sequence determination possible. In this review, we describe the approaches that have been taken to detect low levels of contaminants such as wheat in dietary food for coeliac patients and pork meat or fat in sausages. In addition, these methods may also be used for the identification of meat or fish species and the recognition of genetically altered foods, including the FlavrSavr™ tomato. These examples indicate that a comprehensive description of food products based on the analysis of nucleic acids will be feasible.
LWT - Food Science and Technology – Elsevier
Published: Jan 1, 1996
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