Navigation Links
Biofilms help Salmonella survive hostile conditions, Virginia Tech researchers say
Date:4/10/2013

Virginia Tech scientists have provided new evidence that biofilms bacteria that adhere to surfaces and build protective coatings are at work in the survival of the human pathogen Salmonella.

One out of every six Americans becomes ill from eating contaminated food each year, with over a million illnesses caused by Salmonella bacteria, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Finding out what makes Salmonella resistant to antibacterial measures could help curb outbreaks.

Researchers affiliated with the Fralin Life Science Institute discovered that in addition to protecting Salmonella from heat-processing and sanitizers such as bleach, biofilms preserve the bacteria in extremely dry conditions, and again when the bacteria are subjected to normal digestive processes. The study is now online in the International Journal of Food Microbiology and will appear in the April issue.

"Biofilms are an increasing problem in food processing plants serving as a potential source of contamination," said Monica Ponder, an assistant professor of Food Science and Technology in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences. "We have discovered that Salmonella in biofilms survive on dried foods much better than previously thought, and because of this are more likely to cause disease," Ponder said.

Outbreaks of Salmonella associated with dried foods such as nuts, cereals, spices, powdered milk and pet foods have been associated with over 900 illnesses in the last five years. These foods were previously thought to be safe because the dry nature of the product stops microbial growth.

"Most people expect to find Salmonella on raw meats but don't consider that it can survive on fruits, vegetables or dry products, which are not always cooked," Ponder said.

In moist conditions, Salmonella thrive and reproduce abundantly. If thrust into a dry environment, they cease to reproduce, but turn on genes which produce a biofilm, protecting them from the detrimental environment.

Researchers tested the resilience of the Salmonella biofilm by drying it and storing it in dry milk powder for up to 30 days. At various points it was tested in a simulated gastrointestinal system. Salmonella survived this long- term storage in large numbers but the biofilm Salmonella were more resilient than the free-floating cells treated to the same conditions.

The bacteria's stress response to the dry conditions also made it more likely to cause disease. Biofilms allowed the Salmonella to survive the harsh, acidic environment of the stomach, increasing its chances of reaching the intestines, where infection results in the symptoms associated with food poisoning.

This research may help shape Food and Drug Administration's regulations by highlighting the need for better sanitation and new strategies to reduce biofilm formation on equipment, thus hopefully decreasing the likelihood of another outbreak.


'/>"/>

Contact: Lindsay Key
ltkey@vt.edu
540-231-6594
Virginia Tech
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. LSUHSC scientist awarded nearly $2 million to determine role of biofilms in common fungal infection
2. Mechanisms involved in resistance to the bacteria Salmonella studied in a Ph.D. thesis
3. Assessing a new technique for ensuring fresh produce remains Salmonella-free
4. Salmonella infection, but not as we know it
5. UCSB researchers discover particularly dangerous Salmonella
6. UCSB researchers find a way to detect stealthy, hypervirulent Salmonella strains
7. UCI-led study uncovers how Salmonella avoids the bodys immune response
8. Cushion plants help other plants survive
9. Not just cars, but living organisms need antifreeze to survive
10. How do corals survive in the hottest reefs on the planet?
11. Collaring tapirs to help them survive
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:6/30/2017)... Today, American Trucking Associations announced Seeing ... and eye tracking software, became the newest member ... "Artificial intelligence and advanced sensing algorithms ... driver,s attentiveness levels while on the road.  Drivers ... fatigue and prevent potential accidents, which could lead ...
(Date:5/23/2017)...  Hunova, the first robotic gym for the rehabilitation and functional motor ... Genoa, Italy . The first 30 robots will be ... USA . The technology was developed and patented at the ... spin-off Movendo Technology thanks to a 10 million euro investment from entrepreneur ... ...
(Date:5/6/2017)... SINGAPORE , May 5, 2017 ... has just announced a new breakthrough in biometric ... that exploits quantum mechanical properties to perform ... new smart semiconductor material created by Ram Group ... across finance, entertainment, transportation, supply chains and security. ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:9/19/2017)... , Sept. 19, 2017 ValGenesis Inc., the ... is pleased to announce the strategic partnership with VTI ... clients with validation services using the latest technology available ... will provide clients with efficient and cost-effective validation services ... partner for the ValGenesis VLMS system. ...
(Date:9/19/2017)... Charlotte, NC (PRWEB) , ... September 19, 2017 ... ... focusing on band technologies for surgical applications, announced today that two new patents ... System. , Michael Albert, MD, Co-Founder of Band-LOK, said, “We continue to explore ...
(Date:9/18/2017)... CALIFORNIA (PRWEB) , ... September 18, 2017 , ... ... technological innovation and business process optimization firm for the life sciences and healthcare ... the ServiceMax Maximize 2017 conference. , What: Digital Transformation in Medical Device – ...
(Date:9/14/2017)... ... September 14, 2017 , ... ... and biotech at the third annual DrugDev Summit, November 7-8, 2017 in Philadelphia, ... world’s most progressive clinical research leaders for best practice case studies, keynote presentations, ...
Breaking Biology Technology: