WASHINGTON — The Food and Drug Administration plans to create a database of 100,000 foodborne germs in a bid to speed the government’s response to outbreaks of salmonella, E. coli, and other food-related diseases.
The five-year effort aims to sequence the genetic code of the most common foodborne germs. With this information, the FDA says scientists may be able to create tests that can identify foodborne germs in a matter of days, rather than weeks. Every year about 48 million people in the United States get sick from foodborne bacteria.
The agency will partner with scientists at the University of California, Davis, The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and Agilent Technologies Inc., a company that specializes in testing equipment.
The FDA plans to make the completed database available to the public.