Identification of fungal metabolites from inside Gallus gallus domesticus eggshells by non-invasively detecting volatile organic compounds (VOCs)

Raquel Cumeras, Alexander A. Aksenov, Alberto Pasamontes, Alexander G. Fung, Amanda N. Cianchetta, Hung Doan, R. Michael Davis, Cristina E Davis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

2 Scopus citations


The natural porosity of eggshells allows hen eggs to become contaminated with microbes from the nesting material and environment. Those microorganisms can later proliferate due to the humid ambient conditions while stored in refrigerators, causing a potential health hazard to the consumer. The microbes’ volatile organic compounds (mVOCs) are released by both fungi and bacteria. We studied mVOCs produced by aging eggs likely contaminated by fungi and fresh eggs using the non-invasive detection method of gas-phase sampling of volatiles followed by gas chromatography/mass spectrometry (GC/MS) analysis. Two different fungal species (Cladosporium macrocarpum and Botrytis cinerea) and two different bacteria species (Stenotrophomas rhizophila and Pseudomonas argentinensis) were identified inside the studied eggs. Two compounds believed to originate from the fungi themselves were identified. One fungus-specific compound was found in both egg and the fungi: trichloromethane. [Figure not available: see fulltext.]

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)6649-6658
Number of pages10
JournalAnalytical and Bioanalytical Chemistry
Issue number24
StatePublished - Sep 1 2016



  • Bacteria
  • Fungi
  • Gas chromatography/mass spectrometry (GC/MS)
  • Hen egg
  • Solid-phase microextraction (SPME)
  • Volatile organic compounds (VOCs)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Analytical Chemistry
  • Biochemistry
  • Medicine(all)

Cite this