Optimisation and evaluation of an automated system for extraction of viral RNA from oysters.

Affiliation

European Union Reference Laboratory (EURL) for Foodborne Viruses, National Food Agency, Hamnesplanaden 5, 753 19 Uppsala, Sweden. Electronic address: [Email]

Abstract

The NucliSENS MiniMAG (Minimag) system from bioMérieux is widely used for extraction of viral RNA from oysters and is included as informative material in the ISO method for quantification of hepatitis A virus (HAV) and norovirus genogroups I and II (GI and GII) in food (ISO 15216-1:2017). However, the system is no longer on sale within the EU and alternative methods are therefore needed. We optimised and evaluated an automated benchtop system for extraction of viral RNA from oysters artificially contaminated with HAV, norovirus GI, norovirus GII and mengovirus, using the same reagents and a similar protocol as with the Minimag method. Using the automated system instead of Minimag increased measured viral concentration by on average 1.3 times, suggesting that the automated system extracts viral RNA more efficiently than Minimag. A drawback with the automated system was that it displayed higher variability in measured concentration for mengovirus. The median viral recovery was 17%, 37%, 44% and 41% for samples extracted with the automated system and 15%, 27%, 34% and 23% for samples extracted with Minimag for HAV, norovirus GI, norovirus GII and mengovirus, respectively. All samples displayed <75% inhibition in RT-qPCR when extracted with the automated system or Minimag. Together, these results suggest that the automated system can be a suitable alternative to Minimag in analysis of HAV, norovirus GI and norovirus GII in oysters. However, verification using naturally contaminated oysters is needed before it can be used for food safety control purposes.

Keywords

Foodborne virus,Hepatitis A virus,Norovirus,Nucleic acid extraction,Oyster,RT-qPCR,

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