CONTACT: Dr. Jason Lilly, Neogen Corporation, 517/372-9200


Neogen's Soleris™ microbial test system LANSING, Mich., Oct. 18, 2006 — A comprehensive study by the independent standards-setting organization NSF International has demonstrated equivalencies between Neogen's rapid Soleris™ microbial test protocols and traditional USP plate-counting methods when testing dietary supplements for bacterial contamination.

The demonstrated equivalency has led to the recent inclusion of the Soleris test method in the revised (August 2006) NSF International Standard/American National Standard for Dietary Supplements. In the Standard, which was recently approved by the American National Standards Institute, Soleris test protocols are indicated for use when testing dietary supplements for yeast and mold, total aerobic count (Soleris’ total viable count assay), and Enterobacteriaceae.

“We’re very pleased any time independent studies demonstrate the intended performance of our testing products, but even more so with an organization as prestigious as NSF International. They literally set the standard for many types of safety and quality testing,” said Ed Bradley, Neogen’s vice president of Food Safety. “Including our rapid testing protocols in the Standard will allow more microbial testers to discover the obvious speed and significant labor-reducing benefits of the Soleris system over traditional methods. Soleris is the only rapid microbiological system that is capable of consistently delivering reliable results on such difficult product matrixes, while at the same time being an effective, economical choice for common safety and quality testing.”

With the recent heightened concern of contamination in various foods, including spinach and lettuce, with potentially dangerous bacteria like E. coli, Neogen has seen expanded interest in several markets for use of the Soleris test system to quickly detect foodborne bacteria.

Neogen’s Soleris technology is now used by approximately 200 of the world’s largest food and nutraceutical manufacturers to detect indicator microbes in a fraction of the time needed for traditional methods. They provide unrivalled labor and sample handling efficiency, and easy and intuitive indicator microbe detection and enumeration.

The Soleris system features the quickest automated quality indicator system protocols, including:

  • Yeast and mold in 60-72 hours; conventional methods take 5 days.
  • Total viable count (TVC) in as little as 6-8 hours; conventional methods take 24-48 hours.
  • Coliforms in 9-10 hours; conventional methods take 24 hours.
  • E. coli in 7-10 hours; conventional methods take 24 hours.
  • Lactic bacteria in 30-35 hours; conventional methods take 3-5 days.

The Soleris system is a rapid optical method for the detection of microbial contamination based on an innovative application of classic microbiology. The optical assay measures microbial growth by monitoring pH and other biochemical reactions that generate a color change as microorganisms grow and metabolize. Using the Soleris system enables operators to easily identify, monitor, and map problematic spots in their facilities. By providing trend analysis and multiple format reports with a simple click of a computer mouse, the system helps to ensure that all critical control points, for example, are stable and alerts the user of any possible deviation from established quality standards.

Neogen Corporation (Nasdaq: NEOG) develops and markets products dedicated to food and animal safety. The company’s Food Safety Division markets diagnostic test kits to detect foodborne bacteria, natural toxins, genetic modifications, food allergens, drug residues, plant diseases, and sanitation concerns, and dehydrated culture media.