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Pathogenic Microorganisms in Beef


A New Approach for Elimination of Pathogenic Microorganisms in Beef

Tech Area / Field

  • BIO-MIB/Microbiology/Biotechnology

3 Approved without Funding

Registration date

Leading Institute
Life Sciences International Postgraduate Educational Center, Armenia, Yerevan


  • University of Missouri-Columbia, USA, MO, Columbia\nUniversity of South Carolina / Department of Chemical Engineering, USA, SC, Columbia

Project summary

One of the biggest challenges facing today’s food processors is hygiene and effective sanitation. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently issued a Food Protection Plan to address public health risks, and is encouraging the development of new technologies to fight pathogens in our nation’s food supply. In 1999 the foodborne pathogens Salmonella, Listeria, Campylobacter, and Escherichia coli (both O157 and non-O157) were estimated to cause more than 6 million illnesses and approximately 9000 deaths each year. However, the most recent Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report on the sources and incidence of foodborne disease, released in 2004, has shown a dramatic decrease in E. coli O157:H7 infections. Since raw beef products are the most frequently foodborne sources of these pathogens many technologies have been developing for the gentle but effective preservation of beef. However, recently a novel concept of multitarget beef preservation emerged. It means that the latter includes procedures removing pathogenic microbes from the beef without beef quality changes. As hazardous effects of the microbiological pollution of environmental medium on organisms are mostly realized through water and as water is dominant component (65-80%) of living tissues it could serves as a nutrient media for microbes, which can be pathogen and cause a number of serious human diseases. So the decrease of water component in beef could include procedures removing pathogenic microbes from the cell bathing aqua medium without beef quality changes.

The aim of the first step of the present proposal is to elaborate an effective EMF treating method for the elimination of pathogenic organisms in beef in pre- and post- butchery periods. The fact that EMF-induced dehydration effect on tissue in vitro state is realized through metabolic processes, namely by activation of cAMP-dependent Na/Ca exchange, it could have effective dehydration effect on beef only during the post butchery hydration period, when tissue metabolic process are still active. The duration of this period can be different for beef of different animals as well as it depends on environmental medium of beef processing. Therefore, to use the EMF-treatment method effectively, it is necessary to detect the post butchery period hydration for each animal beef inpidually. For these purposes new impedance metric equipment (Biophys-Expert) will be used for the detection of the post mortem periods of different tissues, which has recently been elaborated by our laboratory in collaboration with Colorado University. The aim of the second step of the present proposal is to give the beef tissue aqua components bactericidal properties. We suggest reaching this aim by the exposure of beef with carbon dioxide (CO2)-enriched and peroxide (H2O2) containing water solution. A novel method for water purification was recently developed in our laboratory by using non-critical concentration of CO2 with the combination of comparatively low concentration of hydrogen peroxide (CO2/H2O2) (AM Patent 20080155). To achieve our goals, we are going to use classical microbiological methods: direct microscopic counts, direct microscopic observation, indirect counts of viable cells (or counting colony forming units (CFUs), involving serial dilution and plating out a sample of a culture on a nutrient agar surface, as well as other standard laboratory methods in life science. For beef and intact animals exposure in magnetic field with variable intensity and frequency will be constructed a special setup. For the detection of beef tissue hydration impedance-metric, classic water content detection methods as a difference between wet and dry weight of tissue, as well as by isotope method counting of the number of functionally active ouabain receptors in cell membrane will be used.


The International Science and Technology Center (ISTC) is an intergovernmental organization connecting scientists from Kazakhstan, Armenia, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, and Georgia with their peers and research organizations in the EU, Japan, Republic of Korea, Norway and the United States.


ISTC facilitates international science projects and assists the global scientific and business community to source and engage with CIS and Georgian institutes that develop or possess an excellence of scientific know-how.

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