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 In Beverages, Microbiology, Real-time PCR

Raise your glass: the first Friday in August is International Beer Day – a perfect day to enjoy a tasty brew. But unfortunately, beer doesn’t always taste as expected: beer spoilers can leave an unpleasant stale taste. It’s good to know that it just got easier to detect beer-spoiling bacteria and yeasts – here’s how it works.

Microorganisms such as Pediococcus, Lactobacillus, Megasphaera or Pectinatus are a major problem for breweries since they affect the taste and cause beer spoilage. When a bacterial infection is detected, brewers often have no choice but to dispose the contaminated beer. If the product has already reached the retail stores, cost-intensive recalls are inevitable. An early detection of an infestation is important to initiate countermeasures and to limit further damage.

The conventional method for detection of beverage spoilers is a microbiological test – a comparatively inexpensive, but slow procedure: results are only available after 3 to 14 days. Molecularbiological methods are becoming increasingly important as a faster alternative to microbiological tests. So-called PCR tests analyze the DNA in a sample and can thus detect microorganisms in a highly specific manner.

Fast and comfortable beer screening by PCR

A new technique makes PCR analysis even better: while traditional procedures take around 2 days, the newly developed QuickGen tests detect beer spoilers in only 2 hours. Sampling and testing is very simple and can also be performed by untrained users. A complex pre-enrichment of the DNA is no longer necessary. Have a look at the procedure in the following video:

Analysis is done in a few easy steps:

  1. Prepare the DNA using filtration or centrifugation
  2. For PCR setup, remove the film from the needed tube strips, pipette the premix as well as the DNA and close the tube strips with the provided caps
  3. Insert the tube strips into your PCR device, select the appropriate program and start the analysis

QuickGEN tests can be used for in-process control at every stage of the production process. They are available in several versions for use with various common PCR devices. At the moment, the following kits are available:

Product Description Details
QuickGEN First-Beer differentiation PCR Kit Detection and differentiation of beer spoiling bacteria and yeasts (Lactobacilli, Pediococci, Pectinatus, Megasphaera, Enterobacteriaceae, Saccharomyces diastaticus, Pichia anomala)
QuickGEN First-Hop resistance Multiplex PCR kit Detection and differentiation of hop resistance genes horA, horC, hitA and orf5
QuickGEN First-PCR yeast and bacteria differentiation Detection and differentiation of beer spoiling bacteria and yeats (Lactobacilli, Pediococci, Enterobacteriaceae, acetic acid bacteria, bottom-fermented, top-fermented and wild yeasts)
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