Navigation Links
Scientists pitch in to help keep salad mixes safe to eat
Date:6/14/2011

This release is available in Spanish.

It's no wonder that packaged salad mixes are a produce section favorite. They offer convenience, selection, and quality, and perhaps best of all, they free us from the chore of washing and chopping, slicing, or shredding salad greens.

But outbreaks of foodborne illness have, from time to time, been associated with bagged salad greens. The outbreaks have led the fresh-cut produce industry to voluntarily adopt stringent quality-control standards.

U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) food safety researchers are pitching in to help keep salad mixes safe to eat. Innovative studies led by Agricultural Research Service (ARS) microbiologist Maria T. Brandl are providing new information about the impressive array of genes that a major foodborne pathogen, Escherichia coli O157:H7, calls into action when attempting to colonize leaves of fresh-cut lettuce.

ARS is USDA's principal intramural scientific research agency. This research supports the USDA priority of ensuring food safety

Mechanical cutting of lettuce leaves into large pieces or shredding of leaves into narrow strips, like those in taco filling, breaks lettuce cells, explains Brandl. The broken cells exude carbohydrates, which the microbe can use as a source of energy. But injured cells can also leak natural compounds such as antimicrobials that are problematic for the pathogen.

A study with romaine lettuce that Brandl and her coinvestigators published in Applied and Environmental Microbiology in 2010 showed that E. coli, when exposed in lab tests to the contents of broken lettuce leaf cells, can adapt quickly. Using an approach known as microarray-based whole genome transcriptional profiling, the researchers determined that the pathogen uses its genetic arsenal to protect itself against not only the antimicrobial compounds, but also against oxidative stress, osmotic stress, damage to its DNA and other threats to its ability to survive and multiply.

The investigation--the first to provide extensive details about the biology of E. coli O157:H7 in fresh-cut lettuce--has paved the way for followup experiments that Brandl and coworkers hope will lead to new technologies to overcome the pathogen's defenses.


'/>"/>

Contact: Marcia Wood
marcia.wood@ars.usda.gov
301-504-1662
United States Department of Agriculture - Research, Education and Economics
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Top Latin-American scientists named 2011 Pew Fellows in the Biomedical Sciences
2. 22 of Americas most promising scientists selected as 2011 Pew Scholars in the Biomedical Sciences
3. Scientists find deadly amphibian disease in the last disease-free region of central America
4. Social scientists study impact of human adult stem cell research
5. Scripps Research scientists awarded $2.2 million to develop treatment for multi-drug addiction
6. Scientists learn from kids, kids become scientists in new MU effort
7. UCLA scientists identify how major biological sensor in the body works
8. Stanford climate scientists forecast permanently hotter summers
9. Scientists uncover role for cell scaffold in tumor formation
10. Scientists use super microscope to pinpoint body’s immunity switch
11. Scripps Research scientists find way to block stress-related cell death
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:2/27/2017)... --  Strategic Cyber Ventures , the industry,s first cybersecurity ... million investment in  Polarity , the first commercial human ... based and is led by cybersecurity veterans Tom ... Gula , also a longtime cybersecurity veteran and founder ... A round of funding. This new funding will be ...
(Date:2/21/2017)... Der weltweite Biobanking-Sektor wird bis ... Gespräch mit mehr als 50 Vertretern aus verschiedenen Branchen wurde ... um diese Prognose zu realisieren. ... Zu den Schwierigkeiten ... Mittel für die Biobank, die Implementierung Zeit sparender Technologien, ...
(Date:2/10/2017)... Research and Markets has announced the addition of ... Commercial Aspects" to their offering. ... Biomarkers play an important ... selection of treatment as well for monitoring the results. There ... modern medicine. Biochip/microarray technologies and next generation sequencing are also ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:3/23/2017)... 23, 2017  GlobeImmune, Inc. today announced it has ... of 12,835,490 shares of its common stock to NantCell, ... connection with the sale of its common stock, NantCell ... issue to GlobeImmune 200,000 shares, an estimated $2.0 million ... "We are pleased to enter into this strategic agreement ...
(Date:3/23/2017)... March 23, 2017 NetworkNewsWire Editorial Coverage  ... Cancer ... significant strain on health care systems, in terms of costs ... so too does the development of innovative and efficient therapies ... Among the many types of cancer treatments, a growing number ...
(Date:3/23/2017)... ... March 23, 2017 , ... Advanced Polymer Monitoring Technologies ... Dr. Sigmund “Sig” Floyd as Vice President ? Global Business Development. Dr. Floyd ... , “Dr. Floyd’s career has spanned 30 years in the chemicals and equipment ...
(Date:3/22/2017)... 2017  UBM and the Massachusetts Medical Device ... partnership and the third annual Massachusetts Medtech Week. Massachusetts ... st Annual MassMEDIC Conference held in conjunction ... 2017. MassMEDIC will feature a ... and CEO, Scott Whitaker , at its ...
Breaking Biology Technology: