High-Pressure Homogenization for the Inactivation of Human Enteric Virus Surrogates

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Novel inactivation methods are needed to control the spread of foodborne viruses responsible for nonbacterial gastroenteritis worldwide. The advent of high-pressure homogenization combining high pressure, shear stress, and cavitation provides the opportunity to evaluate this technology for viral inactivation in fluid foods under continuous processing conditions. Our objective was to evaluate murine norovirus (MNV-1) and MS2 coliphage (single-stranded RNA) as human enteric virus surrogates for their susceptibility to a novel high-pressure homogenization process for application in commercial settings. Experiments were conducted in duplicate with MNV-1 and MS2 coliphage in phosphate-buffered saline, using homogenization pressures of 0, 100, 200, 250, and 300 MPa (the maximum achievable by the homogenizer), resulting in exposure temperatures of 24, 46, 63, 70, and 75°C, respectively, for <2 s. Only homogenization pressures of 300 MPa at 75°C showed inactivation of ∼3 log PFU for MS2 from an initial ∼6 log PFU. Also, MNV-1 showed inactivation of ∼0.8 log PFU at 300 MPa. Further studies are warranted to validate this inactivation process, which can retain the sensory and nutritional value of fluid food and shows promise for application in industrial environments.

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Department of Food Science and Technology, The University of Tennessee–Knoxville, 2605 River Drive, Room 102 FSPB, Knoxville, Tennessee 37996-4591, USA. ddsouza@utk.edu 2: Department of Food Science and Technology, The University of Tennessee–Knoxville, 2605 River Drive, Room 102 FSPB, Knoxville, Tennessee 37996-4591, USA

Publication date: November 1, 2009

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    First published in 1937, the Journal of Food Protection®, is a refereed monthly publication. Each issue contains scientific research and authoritative review articles reporting on a variety of topics in food science pertaining to food safety and quality. The Journal is internationally recognized as the leading publication in the field of food microbiology with a readership exceeding 11,000 scientists from 70 countries. The Journal of Food Protection® is indexed in Index Medicus, Current Contents, BIOSIS, PubMed, Medline, and many others.

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