Corporate Banner
Satellite Banner
Technology
Networks
Scientific Communities
 
Become a Member | Sign in
Home>News>This Article
  News
Return

In-Package Plasma Process Quickly, Effectively Kills Bacteria

Published: Thursday, April 18, 2013
Last Updated: Thursday, April 18, 2013
Bookmark and Share
Exposing packaged liquids, fruits and vegetables to an electrical field for just minutes might eliminate all traces of foodborne pathogens on those foods, according to a Purdue University study.

Kevin Keener, a professor of food science, looks for new ways to kill harmful bacteria, such as E.coli and Salmonella, that contaminate foods and cause serious illnesses and deaths. His method uses electricity to generate a plasma, or ionized gas, from atmospheric gases inside the food package.

This process creates a wide variety of bacteria-killing molecules including ozone, nitrogen oxides, hydrogen peroxide and others. These molecules only exist for a few hours and then revert back to the original atmospheric gas, leaving a bacteria-free product.

In findings published in the Journal of Applied Microbiology, Keener and researchers at the Dublin Institute of Technology demonstrated that sealed-package atmospheric plasma works well to kill bacteria in growth media. Their experiments showed that bacteria on these surfaces were eliminated with 20 seconds of treatment and 24 hours of exposure to the gases it creates. Keener said the cost of the process should be comparable to current chemical and heat treatments used to sanitize foods.

"Even in the most resistant bacteria-growing media, 45 seconds of treatment gave us complete elimination of the E. coli," Keener said. "Under a microscope, we saw holes forming in the cell walls of the bacteria."

Adapting the technology for liquids could allow development of portable devices to clean drinking water in areas with contamination or that lack other purification methods. It could also allow food processors to bottle juices without first heating them, a process widely used to kill bacteria that can alter products.

"This could be developed to allow you to achieve something similar to pasteurization without the heat and quality changes that occur with that process," Keener said.

In Europe, especially, new methods are being sought as alternatives to washing foods in chlorine baths.

"Chlorine water works well on hard surfaces. But there can be issues if bacteria get inside organic matter on the produce, making chlorine ineffective," Keener said.

Keener is working with researchers at Dublin Institute of Technology, National Centre for Plasma Science and Technology at Dublin City University in Ireland, and Innovació i Recerca Industrial i Sostenible (IRIS) in Spain to develop a precommercial system for larger-scale decontamination testing. After that, he would like to build a commercial system that could be used in food-processing plants.

Future research will also consider how the process affects food quality.

"Results from recent testing of E. coli bacteria in liquid suspensions demonstrated significant bacterial reductions with no heating or visual color change." Keener said. "This suggests that atmospheric cold plasma treatment may achieve a cold pasteurization process for liquid foods to extend shelf-life and improve safety."


Further Information
Access to this exclusive content is for Technology Networks Premium members only.

Join Technology Networks Premium for free access to:

  • Exclusive articles
  • Presentations from international conferences
  • Over 2,500+ scientific posters on ePosters
  • More Than 3,700+ scientific videos on LabTube
  • 35 community eNewsletters


Sign In



Forgotten your details? Click Here
If you are not a member you can join here

*Please note: By logging into TechnologyNetworks.com you agree to accept the use of cookies. To find out more about the cookies we use and how to delete them, see our privacy policy.

Related Content

Remote-Controlled Drug Delivery
A team of researchers has created a new implantable drug-delivery system using nanowires that can be wirelessly controlled.
Thursday, June 25, 2015
Microsecond Raman Imaging Might Probe Cells, Organs for Disease
An advanced medical diagnostic tool for the early detection of cancer and other diseases.
Thursday, April 02, 2015
Purdue-Based Firms Grow After Receiving Emerging Innovations Fund Investments
The Fund has helped to support new business ventures across a range of research areas.
Friday, March 13, 2015
Keck Foundation to Fund Purdue Research into Spectroscopic Imaging
Ji-Xin Cheng leads a Purdue team awarded a $1 million W.M. Keck Foundation grant to develop a new type of imaging technology for cell and tissue analysis that could bring advanced medical diagnostics.
Tuesday, February 10, 2015
Pharmaceuticals, Personal Care Products Could Taint Swimming Pools
A new study suggests pharmaceuticals and chemicals from personal care products end up in swimming pools, possibly interacting with chlorine to produce disinfection byproducts with unknown properties and health effects.
Monday, January 12, 2015
Purdue Research Suggests Approach to Treat Virus Causing Respiratory Illness
Enterovirus D68 has stricken children with serious respiratory infections.
Monday, January 05, 2015
Drinking Water Odors, Chemicals Above Health Standards Caused by 'Green Building' Plumbing
Several types of plastic pipes in eco-friendly green buildings in the United States have been found to leach chemicals into drinking water that can cause odors and sometimes exist at levels that may exceed health standards.
Tuesday, October 21, 2014
New Technique Yields Drug, Biomedical Test Results in One Minute
Slug flow microextraction makes it possible to quickly detect the presence of drugs or to monitor certain medical conditions using only a single drop of blood or urine.
Tuesday, October 14, 2014
Producing Orange Corn Rich in Provitamin A
Improvement of carotenoid levels in corn a simpler, faster process for plant breeders.
Saturday, October 11, 2014
New Chip Promising For Tumor-Targeting Research
The new system, called a tumor-microenvironment-on-chip device, will allow researchers to study the complex environment surrounding tumors and the barriers that prevent the targeted delivery of therapeutic agents.
Tuesday, September 23, 2014
Mass Spectrometry Tool Helps Guide Brain Cancer Surgery
A tool to help brain surgeons test and more precisely remove cancerous tissue was successfully used during surgery, according to a Purdue University and Brigham and Women's Hospital study.
Wednesday, July 02, 2014
System 'Prints' Precise, Tailored Drug Dosages
The new approach uses a combination of data and mathematics to determine the precise dosage.
Friday, May 16, 2014
Purdue, Houston Methodist to Take Drug Discoveries from the Bench Top to the Bedside
The planned collaboration on research and educational initiatives includes clinical trials of drugs developed at Purdue.
Monday, March 17, 2014
Helping Genes Get Out of the Starting Blocks Faster
Yeast can quickly adapt to changes in its environment with the help of molecules known as long non-coding RNAs, a Purdue study shows.
Friday, February 21, 2014
Laser Tool Speeds up Detection of Salmonella in Food Products
Purdue University researchers have developed a laser sensor that can identify Salmonella bacteria grown from food samples about three times faster than conventional detection methods.
Sunday, February 16, 2014
Scientific News
The Changing Tides of the In Vitro Diagnostics Market
With the increasing focus in personalized medicine, diagnostics plays a crucial role in patient monitoring.
LaVision BioTec Reports on the Neuro Research on the Human Brain After Trauma
Company reports on the work of Dr Ali Ertürk from the Institute for Stroke and Dementia Research at LMU Munich.
NIH Study Shows No Benefit of Omega-3 Supplements for Cognitive Decline
Research was published in the Journal of the American Medical Association.
Less May Be More in Slowing Cholera Epidemics
Mathematical model shows more cases may be prevented and more lives saved when using one dose of cholera vaccine instead of recommended two doses.
Investigating the Vape
Expert independent review concludes that e-cigarettes have potential to help smokers quit.
NIH Launches Human RSV Study
Study aims to understand infection in healthy adults to aid development of RSV medicines, vaccines.
Researchers Discover Synthesis of a New Nanomaterial
Interdisciplinary team creates biocomposite for first time using physiological conditions.
Poor Survival Rates in Leukemia Linked to Persistent Genetic Mutations
For patients with an often-deadly form of leukemia, new research suggests that lingering cancer-related mutations – detected after initial treatment with chemotherapy – are associated with an increased risk of relapse and poor survival.
Flu Remedies Help Combat E. coli Bacteria
Physiologists from the University of Zurich have now discovered why the intestinal bacterium Escherichia coli (E. coli) multiplies heavily and has an inflammatory effect.
Marijuana Genome Unraveled
A study by Canadian researchers is providing a clearer picture of the evolutionary history and genetic organization of cannabis, a step that could have agricultural, medical and legal implications for this valuable crop.
Scroll Up
Scroll Down
Skyscraper Banner

Skyscraper Banner
Go to LabTube
Go to eposters
 
Access to the latest scientific news
Exclusive articles
Upload and share your posters on ePosters
Latest presentations and webinars
View a library of 1,800+ scientific and medical posters
2,500+ scientific and medical posters
A library of 2,500+ scientific videos on LabTube
3,700+ scientific videos
Close
Premium CrownJOIN TECHNOLOGY NETWORKS PREMIUM FREE!