Impact of vacuum cooling on Escherichia coli O157: H7 infiltration into lettuce tissue

Haiping Li, Mehrdad Tajkarimi, Bennie Osburn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

56 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Vacuum cooling is a common practice in the California leafy green industry. This study addressed the impact of vacuum cooling on the infiltration of Escherichia coli O157:H7 into lettuce as part of the risk assessment responding to the E. coli O157:H7 outbreaks associated with leafy green produce from California. Vacuum cooling significantly increased the infiltration of E. coli O157:H7 into the lettuce tissue (2.65E+06 CFU/g) compared to the nonvacuumed condition (1.98E+05 CFU/g). A stringent surface sterilization and quadruple washing could not eliminate the internalized bacteria from lettuce. It appeared that vacuuming forcibly changed the structure of lettuce tissue such as the stomata, suggesting a possible mechanism of E. coli O157:H7 internalization. Vacuuming also caused a lower reduction rate of E. coli O157:H7 in stored lettuce leaves than that for the nonvacuumed condition.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3138-3142
Number of pages5
JournalApplied and Environmental Microbiology
Volume74
Issue number10
DOIs
StatePublished - May 1 2008

Fingerprint

Lettuce
Escherichia coli O157
Vacuum
lettuce
infiltration
cooling
green leafy vegetables
stomata
plant industry
risk assessment
leaf lettuce
bacterium
industry
washing
Disease Outbreaks
Industry
tissues
tissue
Bacteria
bacteria

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Food Science
  • Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology
  • Ecology

Cite this

Impact of vacuum cooling on Escherichia coli O157 : H7 infiltration into lettuce tissue. / Li, Haiping; Tajkarimi, Mehrdad; Osburn, Bennie.

In: Applied and Environmental Microbiology, Vol. 74, No. 10, 01.05.2008, p. 3138-3142.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Li, Haiping ; Tajkarimi, Mehrdad ; Osburn, Bennie. / Impact of vacuum cooling on Escherichia coli O157 : H7 infiltration into lettuce tissue. In: Applied and Environmental Microbiology. 2008 ; Vol. 74, No. 10. pp. 3138-3142.
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