Campylobacter Testing


Rapid Testing Solutions for the
Detection of Campylobacter

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Campylobacter spp. are regarded as the leading cause of bacterial gastroenteritis in humans worldwide. Infections are usually caused by consuming cross-contaminated or insufficiently processed food (typically red meat, poultry, shellfish and unpasteurized milk). There is an increasing demand for Campylobacter testing in food to meet new regulations regarding contamination levels in poultry.

A comprehensive selection of products is available from Merck for the enrichment, detection and isolation of Campylobacter spp. These include:

  • Dehydrated Culture Media: Unique and convenient granulated media meeting the highest industry performance standards as laid out in ISO 11133 and
  • Singlepath® Lateral Flow Tests: Innovative immunoassays in the format of “pregnancy tests” for detection with ultimate convenience in as little as 20 minutes after enrichment.
Our latest innovation: The easy-to-use Singlepath® Direct Campy Poultry Lateral Flow Kit

The do-it-yourself kit for on-site immunological screening of Campylobacter in poultry flocks requires no prior enrichment step and delivers results within only 2 hours. For increased reliability, Singlepath® Direct Campy Poultry Kit includes a built-in control reaction. There is no need to outsource testing and wait several days for the results or to invest in capital-intensive instrumentation.

Ordering Information

Method ISO 10272-1 FDA BAM Chapter 7 FSIS MLG 41.00
Pre-enrichment Bolton Broth, 37 ± 1°C;
4-6 h,
Bolton Broth, 37 ± 1°C; 4 h,
Microaerophilic or 30°C,
3 h + 37°C, 2 h,
Selective enrichment Bolton Broth 41.5°C,
44 ± 4 h microaerophilic
Bolton Broth 42°C,
20 and 44 ± 4 h
BPW + 2 x Blood-Free Bolton Broth,
42 ± 1°C;
48 ± 2 h,
Isolation mCCD agar + additional,
41.5°C; 44 ± 4 h, microaerophilic
mCCD agar or AHB Agar,
37 - 42°C;
24 - 48 h,
Campy-Cefex Agar,
42 ± 1°C;
48 ± 2 h,

The majority of Campylobacter spp. are relatively metabolically inactive, making identification based on biochemical characteristics difficult. Currently, the most commonly used techniques to test food products for Campylobacter are traditional methods based on culture media. The standard detection method involves enrichment for 48 hours, followed by isolation on selective agars, so that final identification results are only available after 4–5 days. Both culture steps have to be carried out in a microaerophilic environment. These methods are time-consuming as well as labor intensive.


Campylobacteriosis is an infection caused by Campylobacter, most commonly C. jejuni. It produces an inflammatory, sometimes bloody, diarrhea or dysentery, including cramps, fever and abdominal pain. The debilitating neurological disorder, Guillain-Barre Syndrome (GBS), as well as reactive arthritis have also been associated with recent infections with certain C. jejuni strains. C. lari and the emerging pathogen, C. upsaliensis, have also been reported in a small percentage of cases of human Campylobacter infection. Campylobacter spp. are highly infectious: as few as 500 bacteria can cause illness. Campylobacter infections are usually caused by consuming cross-contaminated or insufficiently processed food (typically red meat, poultry, shellfish and unpasteurized milk). Less common are infections as a consequence of eating contaminated fruit and vegetables. In addition, water contaminated with animal and avian feces, agricultural run-off and sewage effluent can act as sources for infection with Campylobacter bacteria.

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