Effect of Pseudomonas fluorescens on Beef Discoloration and Oxymyoglobin Oxidation In Vitro

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The relationship between bacterial growth and oxymyoglobin oxidation in vitro and in meat was studied. In the in vitro study, oxymyoglobin was combined with Pseudomonas fluorescens or sterile nutrient broth (control) in an airtight vessel. P. fluorescens samples showed greater metmyoglobin formation and oxygen consumption than controls. The P. fluorescens population in the reaction vessels was correlated with metmyoglobin formation (r = 0.85, P < 0.05) and oxygen consumption (r = 0.91, P < 0.05). When P. fluorescens and oxymyoglobin were combined in an airtight vessel, reducing the headspace from 13 ml and 9 ml to 3 ml resulted in greater metmyoglobin formation (P < 0.05). In the meat study, beef cores prepared from longissimus lumborum were inoculated with P. fluorescens (107 CFU/cm2) or sterile peptone water (control), packaged under 1% O2 (+99% N2), air, or 100% O2 and stored at 4°C. Inoculated beef cores showed higher bacterial loads and metmyoglobin formation than their respective controls during 10 h storage in 1% O2, 3 days in air, and 7 days in 100% O2 (P < 0.05). This finding indicated that P. fluorescens could accelerate beef discoloration. Overall, studies demonstrated that oxygen consumption concomitant with P. fluorescens growth decreased partial oxygen pressure, which accelerated oxymyoglobin oxidation.

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Department of Animal Science, University of Connecticut, Storrs, Connecticut 06269, USA 2: Korean Meat Industry Research Institute, Seoul, Korea 3: Biotechnology Center, University of Connecticut, Storrs, Connecticut 06269, USA

Publication date: October 1, 1998

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