Evaluation of Heat and pH Treatments on Degradation of Ceftiofur in Whole Milk

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Waste milk feeding practices have been implicated as a potential source for disseminating antimicrobial resistant bacteria among animals and the environment. Two interventions that have shown potential for degrading antimicrobial drugs in milk are heat and pH treatment. The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of heat and pH treatments on the degradation of ceftiofur and ceftiofur free acid equivalents in milk at concentrations previously found in waste milk on dairy farms by spiking saleable pasteurized whole milk with ceftiofur sodium. Three heat treatments of ceftiofur sodium spiked milk were evaluated for their ability to degrade ceftiofur: 63°C for 30 min (LTLT), 72°C for 15 s (HTST) and 92°C for 20 min (HTLT). Two pH treatments of ceftiofur sodium spiked milk were evaluated: pH 4.0 (LpH) and pH 10 (HpH). Control samples spiked with ceftiofur sodium were kept at room temperature and samples collected at corresponding times for heat and pH treatments. Four treatment replicates were performed for each treatment group. Ceftiofur was quantified in milk samples using liquid chromatography mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS) and ceftiofur free acid equivalents (CFAE) were measured using high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC). HTLT resulted in a degradation of 35.24% of the initial concentration of ceftiofur. Ceftiofur degradation did not differ between control and the remaining two heat treatment groups (LTLT and HTST). HpH resulted in degradation of the 95.72 and 96.28% of the initial concentration of ceftiofur and CFAE, respectively. No significant changes in degradation of ceftiofur or CFAE were observed for control or LpH treatments. In conclusion, our study results were that alkalinizing milk to pH 10 and heating milk to 92°C for 20 min degraded ceftiofur and CFAE in spiked simulated waste milk demonstrated promising potential as treatment options for degrading ceftiofur and CFAE in waste milk, and further research is needed to evaluate the viability for implementation of these treatments in dairy farms.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number288
JournalFrontiers in Veterinary Science
StatePublished - May 22 2020


  • antibiotics
  • drug residue
  • inactivation
  • waste milk
  • β-lactams

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • veterinary(all)


Dive into the research topics of 'Evaluation of Heat and pH Treatments on Degradation of Ceftiofur in Whole Milk'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this