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Survival of Listeria monocytogenes in a Simulated Dynamic Gastrointestinal Model during Storage of Inoculated Bologna and Salami Slices in Vacuum Packages

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Listeria monocytogenes counts were determined during storage (82 days, 4°C) in vacuum packages of inoculated bologna and salami slices and after exposure to a simulated dynamic model of the stomach and small intestine. Variables controlled in the model included gastric emptying and gastrointestinal fluid secretion rates, gradual gastric acidification, and intestinal pH maintenance. L. monocytogenes populations increased on bologna and decreased on salami, reaching 8.7 and 1.4 log CFU/g, respectively, on day 82. Inactivation rates (IR) during gastric exposure of bologna and salami ranged from 0.079 (day 14) to 0.158 (day 57) log CFU/g/min and from 0.013 (day 42) to 0.051 (day 1) log CFU/g/min, respectively. On corresponding days, gastric IR for cells on salami were lower than on bologna, suggesting potential protective effects of the former product. However, it is also possible that the low initial L. monocytogenes levels reached with storage of salami (≤2.5 log CFU/g after day 27) may have resulted in slower reductions than in the high levels on bologna. Gradual decline of gastric pH allowed survival in the gastric compartment during the initial stages, which resulted in a large fraction of the cells being delivered into the intestinal compartment. Intestinal IR ranged from 0.003 to 0.048 (bologna) and from 0.002 to 0.056 (salami) log CFU/g/min throughout storage. Although findings indicated potential effects of salami against gastric killing of L. monocytogenes, any effects of the food matrix per se on the gastrointestinal survival of the pathogen were overwhelmed by the high and low contamination levels reached on bologna and salami, respectively, during storage.

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Center for Meat Safety and Quality and Food Safety Cluster, Department of Animal Sciences, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, Colorado 80523, USA 2: Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, Colorado 80523, USA

Publication date: October 1, 2008

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