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

Join For Free

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 3,000+ scientific posters on ePosters
  • More Than 4,400+ 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

Improving Engineered T-Cell Cancer Treatment
Purdue University researchers may have figured out a way to call off a cancer cell assassin that sometimes goes rogue and assign it a larger tumor-specific "hit list."
Friday, April 22, 2016
Environmental Cleanup Tech Rids Oil from Water
A new technology that is easy to manufacture and uses commercially available materials makes it possible to continuously remove oils and other pollutants from water, representing a potential tool for environmental cleanup.
Tuesday, April 05, 2016
Zika Virus Structure Revealed
Team at Purdue becomes the first to determine the structure of the Zika virus, which reveals insights critical to the development of effective antiviral treatments and vaccines.
Monday, April 04, 2016
Identifying Foodborne Pathogens
A Purdue University innovation that creates a "fingerprint-like pattern" to identify foodborne pathogens without using reagents has been licensed by Hettich Lab Technology.
Wednesday, March 02, 2016
'Lipidomics' Could Bring Fast Cancer Diagnosis
Researchers have developed a new analytical tool for medical applications and biological research that might be used to diagnose cancer more rapidly than conventional methods.
Wednesday, February 24, 2016
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
Scientific News
Releasing Cancer Cells for Better Analysis
A new device developed at the University of Michigan could provide a non-invasive way to monitor the progress of an advanced cancer treatment.
Releasing Cancer Cells for Better Analysis
A new device developed at the University of Michigan could provide a non-invasive way to monitor the progress of an advanced cancer treatment.
Apricot Kernels Pose Risk of Cyanide Poisoning
Eating more than three small raw apricot kernels, or less than half of one large kernel, in a serving can exceed safe levels. Toddlers consuming even one small apricot kernel risk being over the safe level.
Cell Transplant Treats Parkinson’s in Mice
A University of Wisconsin—Madison neuroscientist has inserted a genetic switch into nerve cells so a patient can alter their activity by taking designer drugs that would not affect any other cell.
Understanding Female HIV Transmission
Glowing virus maps points of entry through entire female reproductive tract for first time.
Genetic Markers Influence Addiction
Differences in vulnerability to cocaine addiction and relapse linked to both inherited traits and epigenetics, U-M researchers find.
Lab-on-a-Chip for Detecting Glucose
By integrating microfluidic chips with fiber optic biosensors, researchers in China are creating ultrasensitive lab-on-a-chip devices to detect glucose levels.
A lncRNA Regulates Repair of DNA Breaks in Breast Cancer Cells
Findings give "new insight" into biology of tough-to-treat breast cancer.
COPD Linked to Increased Bacterial Invasion
Persistent inflammation in COPD may result from a defect in the immune system that allows airway bacteria to invade deeper into the lung.
Detection of HPV in First-Void Urine
Similar sensitivity of HPV test on first void urine sample compared to cervical smear.
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
3,000+ scientific and medical posters
A library of 2,500+ scientific videos on LabTube
4,400+ scientific videos
Close
Premium CrownJOIN TECHNOLOGY NETWORKS PREMIUM FOR FREE!