API Test Strips

Brief Description:

An API (Analytical Profile Index) test strip is series of cupules containing various freeze dried reagents and color indicators designed for biochemical tests (Igo). The cupules are inoculated with a suspension of purified samples containing the microbe of interest most incubate for 24 to 48 hours at 20 °C (The Science Advisory Board). The results generate a code that can be entered into a database to identify the microbe of interest. The microbes in the database are limited to those that are pathogenic so conclusive results can not always be reached with API strips. API strips are especially useful for quick identification of pathogenic microbes in areas where complete lab resources are not reasonable, such as in developing nations where sanitation is a big issue and sources of outbreaks need to be quickly identified. These strips are manufacturer by the company bioMérieux which has been producing bacterial identification systems for the past 25 years.

Presently there are 15 separate identification systems that cover practically all known pathogenic bacteria and yeasts. Over 600 different species have been cataloged. The different strips are tailored to certain groups of microbes. Such as the API 20 E for identification of Gram (-) rods, RapiD 20 E for identification of enterobacteriaceae within 4 hours, API 20 NE for identification of non-enteric Gram (-) rods, API 10 S for simplified identification of Gram (-) rods, API Candida for identification of yeasts found in clinical infections, API 20 C AUX for identification of yeasts, API Staph for identification of staphylococci and micrococci, API 2- Strep for identification of streptococci and related bacteria, API 20 A for identification of anaerobes, API Coryne for identification of corynebacteria and coryneform, API Listeria for identirication of all species of Listeria, API NH for identification of Neisseria, Haemophilus, B. catarrhalis, API Campy for identification of Campylobacter, and API 50 CH which are research strips – enabling the study of metabolism of 49 carbohydrates (API® strips).

Application in Wine Microbiology:

API strips can be used in wineries to identify some spoilage organisms. Wild yeast and lactic acid bacteria are among the microbes for which API strips can be used. Brettanomyces and acetic acid bacteria are not pathogenic thus API strips are not useful in identifying infections of this nature.