A single-stranded DNA aptamer that selectively binds to Staphylococcus aureus enterotoxin B.
The bacterium Staphylococcus aureus is a common foodborne pathogen capable of secreting a cocktail of small, stable, and strain-specific, staphylococcal enterotoxins (SEs). Staphylococcal food poisoning (SFP) results when improperly handled food contaminated with SEs is consumed. Gastrointestinal symptoms of SFP include emesis, diarrhea and severe abdominal pain, which manifest within hours of ingesting contaminated food. Immuno-affinity based methods directly detect, identify, and quantify several SEs within a food or clinical sample. However, the success of these assays depends upon the availability of a monoclonal antibody, the development of which is non-trivial and costly. The current scope of the available immuno-affinity based methods is limited to the classical SEs and does not encompass all of the known or emergent SEs. In contrast to antibodies, aptamers are short nucleic acids that exhibit high affinity and specificity for their targets without the high-costs and ethical concerns of animal husbandry. Further, researchers may choose to freely distribute aptamers and develop assays without the proprietary issues that increase the per-sample cost of immuno-affinity assays. This study describes a novel aptamer, selected in vitro, with affinity to staphylococcal enterotoxin B (SEB) that may be used in lieu of antibodies in SE detection assays. The aptamer, designated APT(SEB1), successfully isolates SEB from a complex mixture of SEs with extremely high discrimination. This work sets the foundation for future aptamer and assay development towards the entire family of SEs. The rapid, robust, and low-cost identification and quantification of all of the SEs in S. aureus contaminated food is essential for food safety and epidemiological efforts. An in vitro generated library of SE aptamers could potentially allow for the comprehensive and cost-effective analysis of food samples that immuno-affinity assays currently cannot provide.
Spectroscopy and Mass Spectrometry Branch, Division of Analytical Chemistry, Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition, US Food and Drug Administration, College Park, Maryland, United States of America. email@example.com
SourcePloS one 7:3 2012 pg e33410
Molecular Sequence Data
SELEX Aptamer Technique
Staphylococcal Food Poisoning
Pub Type(s)Comparative Study
Research Support, N.I.H., Intramural