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International Journal of Food Microbiology
Volume 287, 2018, Pages 10-17

Next generation microbiological risk assessment meta-omics: The next need for integration

Luca Cocolina, Marios Mataragasb, Francois Bourdichonc, Agapi Doulgerakid, Marie-France Pilete, Balamurugan Jagadeesanf, Kalliopi Rantsioua, Trevor Phisterg

University of Torino, Department of Agricultural, Forest and Food Sciences, Largo Braccini 95, 10095 Grugliasco, Torino, Italy.


The development of a multi-omics approach has provided a new approach to the investigation of microbial communities allowing an integration of data, which can be used to better understand the behaviour of and interactions between community members. Metagenomics, metatranscriptomics, metaproteomics and metabolomics have the potential of producing a large amount of data in a very short time, however an important challenge is how to exploit and interpret these data to assist risk managers in food safety and quality decisions. This can be achieved by integrating multi-omics data in microbiological risk assessment.

In this paper we identify limitations and challenges of the multi-omics approach, underlining promising potentials, but also identifying gaps, which should be addressed for its full exploitation. A view on how this new way of investigation will impact the traditional microbiology schemes in the food industry is also presented.

Keywords: Metagenomics, Metatranscriptomics, Food safety, Food quality, MRA, Next generation sequencing.

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