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Production of <i>Escherichia coli</i> heat – Labile Enterotoxin (LT) in some artificial media and commercially available baby foods

SC Ike
IM Ezeonu
N Mgbor


The production of thermolabile (LT) enterotoxin on some artificial media and commercially available baby foods was studied. Staples medium, Casamino-acids-yeast extract (CA-YE) medium, Tryticase soy broth (TSB) and Syncase medium were evaluated for their ability to support the production of LT toxin. Also, nine commercially available baby foods were evaluated as substrate for LT – toxin production. Rabbit toxicity indices (RTI) showed that the staples medium served as the best artificial medium for toxin production (RTI=1.9) followed by CA-YE (RTI=1.2). Three (NA, CER and BOC), out of nine baby food brands examined supported LT-toxin production with NA giving the highest yield of toxin (RTI=2.2) determination of the electrolyte content of aspirated diarrhoeal fluid showed significant secretion of sodium (Na +) and potassium (K +) electrolytes into the fluid. These results suggest that some baby foods, when prepared and stored under non-hygienic conditions could permit growth of, as well as toxin production by toxin production bacteria and pose a health hazard for the infant population.

Bio-Research Vol. 3(1) 2005: 56-61