Challenges and perspectives in the application of isothermal DNA amplification methods for food and water analysis

Roland Martzy, Claudia Kolm, Rudolf Krska, Robert L Mach, Andreas H Farnleitner, Georg H Reischer

Research output: Journal article (peer-reviewed)Journal article

47 Citations (Scopus)


Molecular diagnostic tools in the field of food and water quality analysis are becoming increasingly widespread. Usually, based on DNA amplification techniques such as polymerase chain reaction (PCR), these methods are highly sensitive and versatile but require well-equipped laboratories and trained personnel. To reduce analysis time and avoid expensive equipment, isothermal DNA amplification methods for detecting various target organisms have been developed. However, to make molecular diagnostics suitable for low-resource settings and in-field applications, it is crucial to continuously adapt the working steps associated with DNA amplification, namely sample preparation, DNA extraction, and visualization of the results. Many novel approaches have been evaluated in recent years to tackle these challenges, e.g., the use of ionic liquids for the rapid isolation of nucleic acids from organisms relevant for food and water analysis or the integration of entire analytical workflows on microfluidic chips. In any event, the future of applications in the field of isothermal amplification will probably lie in ready-to-use cartridges combined with affordable handheld devices for on-site analysis. This trend article aims to make prospective users more familiar with this technology and its potential for moving molecular diagnostics from the laboratory to the field. Graphical abstract ᅟ.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1695-1702
Number of pages8
JournalAnalytical and Bioanalytical Chemistry
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - 16 Mar 2019


  • Cost-Benefit Analysis
  • DNA/genetics
  • Food Analysis
  • Ionic Liquids
  • Lab-On-A-Chip Devices
  • Polymerase Chain Reaction/economics
  • Water Microbiology
  • Water Quality
  • Point-of-care testing
  • DNA extraction
  • Molecular diagnostics
  • Isothermal DNA amplification
  • Low-resource settings
  • Ionic liquids

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Analytical Chemistry
  • Biochemistry


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