Displaying all 9 publications

  1. Elexson, N., Yaya, R., Nor, A.M., Ubong, A., Son, R., Kantilal, H.K., et al.
    Pathogenic Vibrio parahaemolyticus is one of the leading causes of bacterial gastroenteritis in many countries. Among the strains examined, 36 RAPD-types were found when amplified with primers OPA8 and OPA10. The analysis shows the majority of V. parahaemolyticus isolates originated from seafood were branched into four major clusters at 18.2%, 20.7% 34% and 3.4% similarity levels. This suggests that there is potential for a single strain to be distributed widely within a population and there also potential for multiple contaminating strains of different clonal lineages to be present within the same population. Optimum temperature (37ºC) was the highest and stable formation of biofilm. The total percentage of biofilm formation at 37ºC was 33.33% for each of weak, moderate and strong biofilm producers. Room temperature produces 61.1% of weak biofilm producer, while 13. 89% for moderate biofilm producers and produce 25% of strong biofilm. While a total of 91.67% weak biofilm producers at 4ºC and 8:33% for room temperature and no growth of strong biofilm. Upon analysis, strong biofilm was tracked from the largest group at 37°C and room temperature which produce 27.27% of strong biofilm producer respectively. Interestingly, they are derived from cockles.
  2. New, C.Y., Ubong, A., Nur Hasria, K., Nur Fatihah, A., Son, R.
    Vibrio parahaemolyticus is well known to be abundantly distributed in marine, coastal and
    estuarine environments. Since 1951, V. parahaemolyticus had been the source of numerous
    outbreaks related to contaminated or mishandled seafood. However, V. parahaemolyticus
    had been detected on other types of food. This issue has prompted this study to investigate
    on the prevalence of V. parahaemolyticus in various food samples and determine the risk
    associated with it. The results of the MPN-plating technique of the study indicated that V.
    parahaemolyticus was detected in seafood (33.3%, 95% Confidence Interval [CI] 31.9 – 34.8 ,
    94 – 290 MPN/g) and vegetables (10.0%, 95% CI 9.7 – 10.3 , 9.2 – 23 MPN/g) while negative
    V. parahaemolyticus was detected in fruits (0.0%, 95% CI 0 – 1,
  3. Premarathne J.M.K.J.K., New, C.Y., Ubong, A, Nakaguchi, Y., Nishibuchi, M., Son, R.
    Food Research, 2017;1(3):67-76.
    Escherichia coli O157:H7 is a major food-borne pathogen that has resulted in numerous
    outbreaks around the world. Widespread distribution of the organism in various ecological
    niches impedes the control measures. This study aimed to detect and quantify E. coli O157:H7
    in beef sold in wet markets and hypermarkets in Malaysia and to determine the risk of E. coli
    O157:H7 infection linked to consumption of beef. The rfbO157 and flicH7 primers targeted on
    somatic antigen (O157) and flagellar antigen (H7) respectively of E. coli O157:H7 was used for
    the MPN-PCR method. A total of 99 beef samples were collected from local wet markets and
    hypermarkets. The highest E. coli O157:H7 contamination rate was observed in beef samples
    collected from wet markets (89.50%), whereas the contamination rate in hyper market A and B
    were compratively low (35.35 and 20% respectively). However, the microbial load was highest
    in the beef samples from hypermarket A (1100 MPN/g) while E. coli O157:H7 bacterial load
    in beef samples from hypermarket B and wet market ranged from 3 to 93 MPN/g and 3 to 240
    MPN/g, respectively. Using the Quantitative Microbial Risk Assessment (QMRA) approach
    the risk was estimated incorporating the findings of the prevalence study and predictions
    based on home storage, cooking and consumption patterns. Three different exposure pathways
    were investigated to estimate the risk associated with contaminated beef and Monte Carlo
    simulation was used to determine the level of uncertainty. The developed model predicated that
    consumption of contaminated beef can be accountable for 1.83E+06 E. coli O157:H7 cases per
    year in Malaysia. The reliability of the model, data gaps and further research needs, is discussed.
    Through continuous improvement Quantitative Microbial Risk Assessment provides valuable
    insight into controlling and prevention strategies.
  4. New, C.Y., Wong, C.Y., Usha, M., Ubong, A., Son, R., Nakaguchi, Y., et al.
    Food Research, 2017;1(2):33-37.
    Cross contamination is one of the most important contributing factors in foodborne illness
    originating in household environments. The objective of this research was to determine the
    transfer between naturally contaminated chicken liver and leg to cutting board, hand glove,
    knife and cucumber, during slicing. The microorganism tested was Campylobacter jejuni and
    the results showed that the pathogen transferred to all utensils, at different transfer rate, despite
    the low level of the naturally contaminating pathogen. With unknown concentration bacteria in
    the naturally contaminated samples, a proportion of the utensils were still contaminated with C.
    jejuni and not surprisingly, when the sample were contaminated with higher concentrations of
    the pathogen, a higher proportion of the utensils had detectable C. jejuni cells present, though
    in many cases cross contamination seems to be a random event. Transfer of the naturally
    contaminating C. jejuni from the chicken liver and leg to the utensils were
  5. Najwa, M.S., Rukayadi, Y., Ubong, A., Loo, Y.Y., Chang, W.S., Lye, Y.L., et al.
    Salmonella has been reported to be presence both in raw and processed foods worldwide. In this study, the prevalence, quantification and antibiotic susceptibility of Salmonella isolated from raw vegetables or locally known as ulam such as asiatic pennywort (Centella asiatica (L) Urb), water dropwort (Oenanthe javanica (Blume) DC), long bean (Vigna sinensis EndL), and winged bean (Psophocarpus tetragonolobus (L) DC) obtained from retail markets in Selangor, Malaysia were carried out. From 96 samples tested, the overall prevalence of Salmonella spp. was 97.9%, Salmonella Enteritidis was 54.2% and Salmonella Typhimurium was 82.3% respectively. Samples were contaminated with Salmonella ranging from < 3 to 2400 MPN/g. Salmonella Enteritidis and Salmonella Typhimurium isolates obtained from the raw vegetables (ulam) were found to exhibit high resistance against ampicillin (100%), erythromycin (100%), amoxicillin/clavunic acid (81.3%), cephalothin (75%), streptomycin (50%) and ciprofloxacin (50%). All Salmonella isolates showed multi drug resistant (MDR) profile with each isolate being resistant to 3 or more antibiotics. The multiple antibiotic resistance (MAR) index of Salmonella isolates ranged from 0.27 to 0.55 for Salmonella Enteritidis and 0.27 to 0.82 for Salmonella Typhimurium. The presence of Salmonella on raw vegetables (ulam) and high antibiotic resistance isolates indicated that raw vegetables could be contaminated and thus imposes possible health risk to local consumers.
  6. New, C.Y., Ubong, A., Premarathne, J.M.K.J.K., Thung, T.Y., Lee, E., Chang, W.S., et al.
    Food Research, 2017;1(6):183-202.
    Food safety in Malaysia is not considered an issue yet. From the previous year (2005-
    2015) records, the incidence rate of food poisoning had been fluctuating and despite that,
    cases continue to occur especially among school students. As a developing nation, it is
    high-time that Malaysia begins to emphasize on food safety to reduce the burden of
    foodborne illness in the socio-economic development of the country, and at the same time,
    gain benefits in terms of economic returns and trade through food safety enforcement.
    Most importantly, public health is achieved through food safety implementation and
    accentuation. The current standing point of the Malaysia’s food safety is discussed in this
    review. In addition, the review will also discuss the role of academicians as intervention
    contributions in tackling food safety issues. The review is hoped to provide valuable and
    concentrated information and knowledge to readers in the light to drive Malaysia into
    ensuring safer food for the public.
  7. Elexson, N., Nik Yuhanis, F.N., Malcolm, T.T.H., New, C.Y., Chang, W.S., Ubong, A., et al.
    Food Research, 2017;1(1):29-32.
    Irrespective of its health effects, street foods are very popular with the consumers. The main
    purpose of this research was to study the biosafety of Escherichia coli in popiah, a Malaysian
    street food sold at a roadside food stall and a restaurant in Sri Serdang, Selangor, Malaysia,
    using the combination of the most probable number (MPN)-Polymerase Chain Reaction
    (PCR) assay-plating on Eosin Methylene Blue (EMB) agar methods. Using these biomolecular
    methods, E. coli was detected in 12/15 (80%) and 11/15 (73%) of the collected samples from
    the roadside food stall and the restaurant respectively. The incidence of stx virulence-associated
    genes was detected in 1/15 (7%) among the E. coli isolated from samples taken from the
    roadside food stall while the E. coli isolated from the restaurant was 3/15 (20%). The density
    of E. coli ranged from 1100 MPN/g and the density of E. coli positive with stx genes
  8. Thung, T. Y., Chin, Y. Z., Najwa, M. S., Ubong, A., New, C. Y., Ramzi, O. S. B., et al.
    Salmonellosis is an important public health problem and causes large economic losses in the poultry industry. The emergence of molecular technology has opened various possibilities for constructing tailor-made proteins, particularly protein E from bacteriophage PhiX174 for the
    production of bacterial ghosts (BGs) applied in vaccines purposes. In the present study, the plamdaPRcI-Elysis plasmid carrying the PhiX174 lysis gene E and thermo-sensitive lamda PR-cl857 regulatory system was constructed. Two Salmonella Enteritidis (SE-2 and SE- 4) and one Salmonella Typhimurium (ST-4) isolates were able to uptake the lysis plasmid via electrotransformation. Generation of ghosts was enhanced by increasing the incubation temperature up to 42˚C. Cell viability of SE-2, SE-4 and ST-4 decreased ranging in log 2.7 to log 4.1 cycles after lysis induction. Moreover, SE-2 and SE-4 exhibited the earliest reduction of CFU after 3 h of incubation. Our results may provide a promising avenue for the development of Salmonella BGs vaccines.
  9. Thung, T.Y, Siti Norshafawatie, B.M.F., Premarathne, J.M.K.J.K., Chang, W.S., Loo, Y.Y., Kuan, C.H., et al.
    Bacteriophages are the viruses of bacteria and are widely distributed in the biosphere, exhibiting
    dramatic manifestations both in liquid cultures and on solid media. In this study, bacteriophages
    were isolated from different types of food (beef, chicken meats, cucumber, lettuce, clam,
    cockles and shrimp) and sewage samples using 6 reference pathogen strains (Salmonella
    Enteritidis, Salmonella Typhimurium, Campylobacter jejuni, Vibrio parahaemolyticus, Listeria
    monocytogenes and Escherichia coli). A total of 29 bacteriophage isolates were obtained and
    further examined for titer via agar overlay assay. The titers were determined within the range
    of 108
    to 1011 PFU/mL. Our results showed that diverse of bacteriophages are naturally present
    in a variety of foods.
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