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Efficacy of Gamma Radiation and Aqueous Chlorine on Escherichia coli O157:H7 in Hydroponically Grown Lettuce Plants

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Interaction of Escherichia coli O157:H7/pGFP with hydroponically grown lettuce plants was evaluated in this study. Lettuce seedlings were planted in contaminated Hoagland's nutrient solution and thereafter subjected to gamma radiation at 0.25, 0.5, and 0.75 kGy, and aqueous chlorine at 200 ppm. There was no trace of E. coli O157:H7/pGFP in lettuce leaves harvested from noncontaminated nutrient solution (control); however, for plants grown in contaminated nutrient solution, the pathogen was recovered from the leaves disinfected with 80% ethanol and 0.1% mercuric chloride. Most of the lettuce seedlings grown in contaminated nutrient solution tested negative for E. coli O157:H7/pGFP under controlled conditions.

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Institute of Agriculture and Environmental Research, Tennessee State University, Nashville, Tennessee 37209, USA 2: Alabama Cooperative Extension System, Auburn University, Auburn, Alabama 36849, USA 3: Department of Nutrition and Food Science, Auburn University, Auburn, Alabama 36849, USA 4: College of Agricultural and Natural Resources, University of Maryland, College Park, Maryland 20742, USA

Publication date: March 1, 2007

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