Beer proves a difficult medium for microorganisms to thrive in due to the presence of alcohol and the low pH. Furthermore, the influence of carbon dioxide and bitter acids from the hops present additional growth barriers.
Nevertheless, some microorganisms have adapted to this inhospitable beer environment and are even capable of thriving in such a setting. Unfortunately, this microorganism growth has the potential to spoil the beer, altering the taste or making it cloudy.
For this reason breweries quality check the beer, including raw materials, by testing for the presence of beer spoiling organisms at regular intervals throughout the entire production cycle.
The Milenia GenLine range includes rapid and reliable test systems for the detection of such beer spoiling organisms by molecular biology techniques that are simple enough to use with just minimal laboratory requirements.
All Milenia GenLine tests are based on Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) technology which copies targeted double strands of DNA in-vitro. A DNA polymerase, short target-specific DNA single strands, so-called primers and nucleotides must be present in the reaction mix. The basis of PCR is a temperature protocol which runs over a number of consecutive cycles. In each cycle a duplication of the specific DNA target sequence is achieved. Based on this principle, more than 1 billion copies can be created after 30 cycles from the one original copy.
The primers applied in the Milenia GenLine tests are all marked with a specific label. These labels are detected by the universal test strip if PCR products are run. The Milenia GenLine tests allow for the simultaneous detection of 2 different gene products on an individual test strip; a feature which permits the addition of a control gene to the PCR mixes and therefore enables the user to check whether or not the PCR has worked correctly in the sample matrix applied in the test.
As well as testing beer, rapid swab-based methods have been validated for fast and reliable testing of brewing equipment.