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Weber Scientific, USciences Enter into License Agreement

By Jenna Pizzi

Published on December 11, 2018

Weber Scientific (Weber) and University of the Sciences in Philadelphia (USciences) announced that they have entered into a license agreement to provide Weber with a license to Farber Pham Diastaticus Medium (FPDM), discovered by Matthew J. Farber, PhD, Director of the University’s Brewing Science Certificate Program. The name FPDM was selected to credit undergraduate researcher Kent Pham BI'20, who worked on this project in Dr. Farber’s lab.

FPDM is a new microbiological medium for the detection of Saccharomyces cerevisiae var. diastaticus, a wild yeast contaminant which represents a major beer spoilage threat. Product contamination has led to costly product recalls as infection has led to off-flavors, over-attenuation, and over-carbonation, potentially causing gushing beer, exploding packages, or non-compliance with federal reporting of alcohol by volume. A patent has been filed to protect the invention.

This novel medium formulation is selective for all diastaticus strains tested while preventing growth of brewing yeast strains. It is effective as a solid agar medium for traditional plating or as a broth for enrichment culture. FPDM has been successfully used for:

  • Detection of diastaticus contamination of beer through traditional sample plating on FPDM agar, with samples including fermenting beer, finished beer, yeast slurries, and environmental swabs.
  • Detection of low diastaticus contamination in yeast slurries through enrichment in FPDM broth.
  • Isolation of diastaticus in brewery samples which tested positive via rapid, PCR-based methods but negative on all traditional culture media.

Weber, a New Jersey-based company which sells products for food and beverage testing, has begun to produce FPDM and market it to the professional as well as the home brewing communities.

“We have used FPDM to detect diastaticus contamination at every stage of the brewing process from yeast slurry to finished beer. We look forward to getting this medium into the hands of all brewers to enable further microbiological screening and the production of quality beer,” said Dr. Farber.

The University was supported during the protection and licensing of FPDM by L2C Partners, which provides technology transfer and commercialization services nationally to colleges, universities, and research organizations.

About Weber Scientific: Weber Scientific has been a laboratory supplier to the food and beverage industry since 1959. To learn more visit or call 800-328-8378.

About the University of the Sciences in Philadelphia ( University of the Sciences has prepared students to be leaders and practitioners in the healthcare and science fields for nearly 200 years. Key to its distinctive education is a tradition of hands-on research and experiential learning that is evident in every graduate who has walked its campus. Since its founding in 1821 as Philadelphia College of Pharmacy, the first college of pharmacy in North America, USciences has grown to more than 30 degree-granting programs from bachelor’s through doctoral degrees in the health sciences, bench sciences, and healthcare business and policy fields.

About L2C Partners ( L2C Partners of Wynnewood, Pennsylvania, offers institutions and
research organizations expert outsourced technology transfer and commercialization services.

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