a microbiology newsletter -january, 2022
A newsletter of, by, and for microbiologists. Copyright 2022, rights reserved
Zinc, zinc ionophores, and Vitamin D are recommended for a robust immune system.
Early Treatment of COVID-19

What are the recent recommendations regarding "home based" treatment of the virus?

Read the resource from The Association of American Physicians and Surgeons...

More outpatient recommendations as published in the American Journal of Medicine...

1) Reduction of re-inoculation - To prevent further spread of the virus, ventilation measures can be taken.
2) Combination antiviral therapy - Zinc lozenges, zinc ionophores (hydroxychloroquin (HCG)), azithromycin, doxycycline, Favipiravir.
3) Immunomodulation - Corticosteroids to prevent the cytokine storm.
4) Antiplatelet/antithrombotic therapy - Low dose aspirin or heparin to prevent blood clots.
5) Administration of oxygen - Blood oxygen can be monitored with a fingertip pulse oximeter, supervised supplemental oxygen, and self-proning.

Did you know that Hardy now has Ship Tracking notification emails that are activated whenever we ship out your order? You can now see the progress of your order from our dock to your lab.

Yes!...Just like Amazon!

Do we have your current email address for notifications?

If not, click here.

Order Tracking
Now Active!
Caveat emptor: Let the buyer beware...

Sushi and Sashimi
Are They Safe to Consume?
How can you be sure the bacteria and parasites are dead?

In the United States, 62% of the population has tried sushi at least once. (1) However, recent studies from Norway and Brazil indicate that consumers should be checking that their sushi and sashimi were recently prepared and stored properly. To define our terms, many non-Japanese use the terms sashimi and sushi interchangeably, but the two dishes are distinct and separate. Sushi refers to any dish made with vinegared rice. While raw fish is one traditional sushi ingredient, many sushi dishes contain seafood that has been cooked, and others have no seafood at all. Sashimi by contrast, consists of raw fish or meat and is always served on its own.

Sushi and sahshimi are a complex meal to prepare and distribute due to the nature of multiple lightly prepared vegetables and raw meats, which may harbor various pathogens. Furthermore, they often have strict storage temperature requirements and a short shelf life, which further adds to the complexity. Additionally, they are typically prepared by hand, which could lead to unintentional pathogen contamination risk due to improper hand hygiene by the chef. The use of raw or uncooked meats is especially risky, because their use may lead to an increased risk of foodborne illness due to common food pathogens such as Salmonella, Listeria, Aeromonas, Vibrio parahaemolyticus and parasites especially the fish tapeworm, Diphyllobothrium latum. (2, 5)

Even though freezing will kill parasites, it won't kill bacteria. Those who prepare fish should be aware that cooking at a temperature of only 55°C for 5 minutes will kill the larvae; if consuming raw fish, freezing to − 20°C for 7 days, or flash freezing to − 35°C for 15 hours, as long as the flesh is less than 15cm thick, effectively kills the larvae also. Sushi and sashimi chefs should use only fish frozen in this way. While these freezing protocols are the standards required by public health regulations, they are not easy for public health inspectors to verify.(6) The x-ray shown above is from a Chinese man who regularly consumed raw improperly prepared fish and complained of itching and abdominal pain. His body was infected with hundreds of fish tapeworms. (5)

In a study conducted in Norway by Hoel et al., various types of pre-made ready-to-eat (RTE) sushi were analyzed and a multitude of bacteria were discovered.(2) After microbial analysis, approximately half of the 58 sushi samples analyzed were considered unsatisfactory for consumers with >6 log CFU/g. The distributors prepared the meals for distribution and products were sold within 2-3 days. This study determined that poor temperature control during distribution from the preparation sites to the stores led to increased microorganism concentrations.

In Brazil, a study was conducted by Gomes et al. to determine the microbiological quality of sushi and sashimi in the Federal District.(3) In this study, 27 samples of sashimi and sushi were collected and analyzed for various microorganisms. Overall, 40.7% of the sashimi samples and 25.9% of the sushi samples were deemed unfit for consumption based on food safety guidelines in Brazil. The study concluded that the ingredients must be of very high quality in order to produce RTE foods with a low concentration of microorganisms. Since sushi and sashimi are prepared manually with raw ingredients and no heat processing, hygienic preparation is extremely important.

At the grocery store, sell by dates and prepared by dates can be observed on sushi and sashimi boxes. If sushi or sashimi is consumed immediately after preparation, then it is more likely to be safe. If it is not consumed immediately, it should be stored at refrigerated temperatures.(4) These studies support that with good preparation practices by the producers, more temperature controlled transportation implemented by distributors, and due diligence by consumers to ensure the sushi is freshly prepared, people are more likely to avoid contracting foodborne illness.

by Anna Klavins
Performance Studies Supervisor

Works Cited: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6
Did you know that Hardy Diagnostics was the first to introduce Chromogenic Media to America in 1996?

Chromogenic media allows the microbiologist to make identifications based on colony color. The principle involves a carbohydrate molecule in the media that is bound to a colorless chromogen. When a specific bacterial enzyme cleaves the bond, the chromogen turns color, thus creating color throughout the bacterial colony.

Want to see the complete list? Just type "HardyCHROM" in the search bar here.

Interested in trying out any of our HardyCHROM plates? Contact your account rep here for free evaluation samples.

HardyCHROM Plates

chromo plate
HC MRSA 48 hours
The last Petri Dish Rack
you will ever have to buy!
Hardy's new DuraRack is constructed to last a life-time. Stop using brittle acrylic racks that must often be replaced. DuraRack is made of tough steel with a durable epoxy coating.

In the late 1800s a British absentee landlord hired Charles Boycott to help collect the rent from Irish farmers, who had experienced devastating crop failures. Since they could not pay, the farmers ostracized Mr. Boycott, convincing local merchants not to sell to him. Less than a year later, he was forced to flee Ireland and return to England. Even the postman refused to deliver his mail! Hence, we still use his name when taking action against an unpopular company by refusing to buy from them.
Probiotics found to assist in
restoring normal immune function...

Can our gut microbiome help to overcome Covid-19?
COVID-19 disrupts normal bowel flora
SARS-CoV-2 infection induces an aggressive inflammatory response which is strongly implicated in the cause of multi-organ dysfunction in some patients.(3) As a result, disease severity is likely caused not only by viral infection, but also an extreme host immune reaction. Patients with severe disease have been observed to have high levels of inflammatory markers and cytokines that reflect a strong immune response.(1)

The GI tract is the largest immunological organ and the gut microbiota is known to modulate host immune responses.(3) Gut microbial metabolic processes have been observed to strongly impact the production of cytokines. Cytokines are small proteins that act as signaling molecules that coordinate the host’s response against infection and inflammation.(4) In response to infection, excessive levels of cytokines are released leading to hyper inflammation that is observed in some patients infected with SARS-CoV-2.(4)

There is increasing evidence that the GI tract, and therefore the gut microbiome, is involved in the COVID-19 immune response observed in patients. SARS-CoV-2 has the ability to infect and replicate in the human small intestine enterocytes and viral RNA has been consistently detected in stool samples, suggesting involvement of the GI tract.(2)

In a study conducted in Hong Kong by Yeoh et al., records from 100 patients with laboratory-confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infections and 78 adults without infection were obtained. These patients’ blood and serial stool specimens were further analyzed. Shotgun sequencing of total DNA extracted from the stool samples characterized the gut microbiome composition and the concentration of inflammatory cytokines were determined from blood plasma.(2) The study found that the composition of the gut microbiome was significantly different in the patients with COVID-19 compared to the patients without COVID-19.(1)

Several commensal gut bacteria with known immunomodulatory potential, including Faecalibacterium prausnitzii, Eubacterium rectale and several bifidobacterial species were underrepresented in COVID-19 patients and remained low in samples collected up to one month after disease resolution.(2) The microbial imbalance found in the COVID-19 patients correlated with elevated concentrations of inflammatory cytokines and plasma concentrations of several cytokines, chemokines and inflammation markers.(2) These findings suggest that the gut microbiota could play a role in modulating host immune response and potentially influence disease severity and outcomes.(1)

“Our results suggest that dysbiosis weakens our immune defense, thereby predisposing to more severe SARS-CoV-2 infection and contributing to ‘long COVID,'” claimed Dr. Siew Ng of the Chinese University of Hong Kong. “Probiotics, if using the right combination of missing bacteria to boost immunity, may be potentially useful as an adjuvant therapy.” She went on to say, “The abnormal gut microbiota (dysbiosis) in COVID patients persists after clearance of the virus. These alterations could play a role in ‘long COVID.’ Clinical management not only should aim at clearing the virus but also restoring the abnormal gut microbiota,”

As a result, Dr. Ng and her colleagues developed a probiotic capsule that they used to treat patients recovering from Covid infections that helped to achieve complete symptom resolution, showed significantly reduced proinflammatory markers in their blood, had increased favorable bacteria in their stool, and developed neutralizing antibody.

These results suggest that dysbiosis, an unhealthy and unbalanced microbiome due to a loss of diversity and a decrease in beneficial microbes, weakens our immune system defenses and therefore prompts a more severe infection from SARS-CoV-2.(1) Therefore, increasing beneficial gut species could serve as a novel avenue to mitigate severe disease from SARS-CoV-2.
By Makena Brand
Technical Services Microbiologist I
Works Cited: 1, 2, 3, 4
Covid Supplies and Test Kits

Introducing the Genbody...

Covid Rapid Antigen

Fast results in only 15 minutes!

Found to be effective against the Omicron Variant!
  • Specificity - 100%
  • Sensitivity - 92.3%
  • Authorized for Emergency Use (EUA)
  • Authorized for Point of Care use (POC)
  • Includes nasal swabs and positive control

Rapid Covid/Flu Antigen Test Kit
Now you can test simultaneously for Covid and Flu A+B with one rapid test. Results in only 15 minutes. No equipment needed! NP Collection swabs and controls included.
Rapid Covid Antibody Test Kit
Hardy announces a rapid test kit for the detection of Covid antibodies (both IgM for current infection and IgG for long term immunity) from any blood specimen. Read out in only 10 minutes. No equipment required.
AloeSafe, a better way

Hardy's hand sanitizing gel guards against drying of your skin with Vitamin E, soothes with Aloe Vera, and has a pleasant scent with lavender oil. No harmful ingredients as with the cheap drug store variety! Don't your hands deserve the very best?
DisCide Wipes

With Hardy's DisCide Ultra you get 160 towelettes that are soaked with two powerful killing agents, isopropyl alcohol and quaternary ammonium. Effective against bacteria and viruses.
Viral Transport Medium
Hardy's viral specimen transport is ideal for COVID-19 antigen testing. The shelf life has been increased to 365 days at room temperature. Swabs are sold separately.
N95 Masks
NIOSH Certified, with silicone seal
Now available for immediate shipping!
Face Masks
With adjustable metal nose band.
Now available for immediate shipping!
Double Action Sanitizer

Hardy's custom produced sanitizer pump bottle gives you double protection...both isopropyl alcohol and hydrogen peroxide. Bugs don't stand a chance!
Comfy Lab Coats

For added protection on the job, Hardy offers disposable lab coats, featuring three pockets, and comfortable knit cuffs and collars.
flocked swab
Specimen Collection Swabs
Hardy offers swabs in the flocked, foam, and spun polyester formats.
Choose from nasopharyngeal, oropharyngeal, standard, or urethral.

Available for immediate shipping!


Remember the good old days when someone blew on a cake,
then we ate it?

She was only a whiskey-maker, but he loved her still.
A rubber-band pistol was confiscated from an algebra class, because it was a weapon of math disruption.
No matter how much you push the envelope, it'll still be stationery.

Two hats were hanging on a hat rack in the hallway. One hat said to the other: 'You stay here; I'll go on a head.'
I wondered why the baseball kept getting bigger. Then it hit me.

A backward poet writes inverse.
In a democracy it's your vote that counts. In feudalism it's your count that votes.
Clinical Microbiology
HardyCHROM Strep A

Are you ready for Strep Season? Hardy's chromogenic medium detects Group A Strep. Colored colonies are easy to see on a white background.

HardyCHROM Candida+auris

Hardy's new chromogenic plate for the detection of Candida spp, now includes C. auris! It creates both a colored and fluorescent colony. Vivid colors stand out against a white background.
PYR Test
Rapid Test Methods

Check out our mini catalog on rapid test kits that includes reagents and test cards. You'll see many "hard to find" products that will save you time and money!
Loops of all kinds!

When it comes to loops, Hardy has it all. Nichrome, platinum, disposable, calibrated, needles, or spreaders. Click below to see our complete mini-catalog on inoculating loops.
MBL organisms
QC Organisms

Hundreds of species are available from Hardy Diagnostics, your MBL distributor. Available in the pellet or stick format. Quantitative or qualitative.
Carba 5 for CRE Detection

With Carba 5 you can test for the 5 major enzymes of carbapenem resistance. Test for gene expression. Read out in only 15 minutes. No equipment needed!
Rapid Bacterial Pneumonia

Hardy offers a rapid kit that will detect bacterial antigens in the urine.
Fast Strep Grouping

Strep season is in full swing! Hardy's StrepPRO will rapidly identify your streps into the proper Lancefield grouping. Takes only minutes!

Pre-reduced anaerobic culture media, ready-to-use for your set-ups. Pouches are gassed out with nitrogen for superior growth. See our complete anaerobic catalog below...
Dehydrated Media

Hardy manufactures a complete line of powdered media. It is conveniently packaged in five different configurations ready for export.

Seeing is Believing?
Does the center look whiter than the perimeter?
Actually it's not!

"Believe nothing of what you hear, and only half of what you see"
~ Edgar Allen Poe
Pharmaceutical Microbiology
HardyVAL Media Fill Test Kits

Hardy offers a complete line of products to help pharmacists with USP <797> <800> and more!
Impact Air Samplers

Hardy offers a complete line of air samplers for your clean room monitoring program. Check out our complete catalog!
Food Microbiology
The Dilugent Shaker

Hardy has a better way of performing serial dilutions! Now with Butterfields Buffer!

Please click on the link below to learn how you can save time and money...
The smartest ATP Monitors!

Hardy is your authorized dealer for the Hygiena ATP monitoring system, Ensure Touch. Get results in 10 seconds!

Wisdom to Ponder...
Edwin Hubble

1889 ~ 1953

An American astronomer that proved that many objects previously thought to be clouds of dust and gas and classified as "nebulae" were actually galaxies beyond our Milky Way. He also contributed to the theory that the universe is ever expanding as evidenced by the red-shifted light showing recession velocity.

The Hubble Space telescope was named in his honor as shown below.
"Past time is finite, future time is infinite."

"All nature is a vast symbolism: Every material fact has sheathed within it a spiritual truth."

"We do not know why we are born into the world, but we can try to find out what sort of a world it is - at least in its physical aspects."

"The universe is unfolding as it should."

"Equipped with his five senses, man explores the universe around him and calls the adventure Science."

"We find them smaller and fainter, in constantly increasing numbers, and we know that we are reaching into space, farther and farther, until, with the faintest nebulae that can be detected with the greatest telescopes, we arrive at the frontier of the known universe."
Mark Twain

“I didn't attend the funeral, but I sent a nice letter saying I approved of it."

Mark Twain

Ready for some cranial aerobics?

Increasing your protection...

How Zinc Ionophores can effectively fight COVID-19

References for utilizing Vitamin D and Zinc supplementation for the adjunct therapy
and prevention of COVID-19.

During our 41 years of serving the microbiology community, we have continually aimed to provide the utmost in "a culture of service" for our valued customers. As a 100% employee owned company, we have even more incentive to please our customers as best we possibly can every day. Do you have a suggestion, comment, or question? Please contact me here.

Jay Hardy, CLS, SM (NRCM)
CEO of Hardy Diagnostics