Category Archives: Antimicrobials

Research – Antimicrobial Resistance in Salmonella enterica Serovar Paratyphi B Variant Java in Poultry from Europe and Latin America



Image CDC

Salmonella enterica serovar Paratyphi B variant Java sequence type 28 is prevalent in poultry and poultry meat. We investigated the evolutionary relatedness between sequence type 28 strains from Europe and Latin America using time-resolved phylogeny and principal component analysis. We sequenced isolates from Colombia, Guatemala, Costa Rica, and the Netherlands and complemented them with publicly available genomes from Europe, Africa, and the Middle East. Phylogenetic time trees and effective population sizes (Ne) showed separate clustering of strains from Latin America and Europe. The separation is estimated to have occurred during the 1980s. Ne of strains increased sharply in Europe around 1995 and in Latin America around 2005. Principal component analysis on noncore genes showed a clear distinction between strains from Europe and Latin America, whereas the plasmid gene content was similar. Regardless of the evolutionary separation, similar features of resistance to β-lactams and quinolones/fluoroquinolones indicated parallel evolution of antimicrobial resistance in both regions.

Research – Presence of Bacterial Pathogens and Levels of Indicator Bacteria Associated with Duck Carcasses in a Commercial Processing Facility

Journal of Food Protection


Little information has been published on the microbiological aspects of U.S. commercial duck processing. The objective of this study was to measure prevalence and/or levels of bacteria in duck samples representing the live bird and partially or fully processed oven-ready duck meat. At 12 monthly sampling times, samples were collected at six sites along the processing line in a commercial duck slaughter plant. Crop and cecum samples were collected at the point of evisceration. Whole carcass rinse samples were collected before and after carcass immersion chilling plus application of an antimicrobial spray. Leg quarters were collected from the cut-up line before and after application of an antimicrobial dip treatment. All samples (five from each site per monthly replication) were directly plated and/or enriched for Salmonella and Campylobacter. For the last 10 replications, carcass and leg quarter rinse samples were also evaluated for enumeration of total aerobic bacteria, Escherichia coli, and coliforms. Most cecum, crop, and prechill carcass rinse samples were positive for Campylobacter (80, 72, and 67%, respectively). Carcass chilling and chlorinated spray significantly lowered Campylobacter prevalence (P < 0.01), and even fewer leg quarters were positive for Campylobacter (P < 0.01). Passage through a chlorinated dip did not further reduce Campylobacter prevalence on leg quarters. Salmonella was infrequently found in any of the samples examined (≤10%). Total aerobic bacteria, coliforms, and E. coli levels were reduced (P < 0.01) on whole carcasses by chilling but were not different after cut-up or leg quarter dip treatment. Overall, current commercial duck processing techniques as applied in the tested plant were effective for reducing the prevalence and levels of Campylobacter on duck meat products.

  • Campylobacter and Salmonella can be associated with live ducks for commercial slaughter.
  • Antimicrobial treatment reduced the prevalence of Campylobacter in duck samples.
  • Antimicrobial treatment reduced levels of aerobic bacteria, coliforms, and E. coli in duck samples.

Research -ECCMID studies probe resistant pathogens in pets, pet food, and people


Two studies by Portuguese scientists presented at the European Congress of Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases (ECCMID) highlight concerns about the potential for transmission of multidrug-resistant (MDR) bacteria between companion animals and humans.

In one study, researchers from the University of Porto found high levels of MDR enterococci in raw-frozen dog food sold in the European Union. In another study, a household survey and molecular screening by researchers from the University of Lisbon found the colistin-resistance gene MCR-1 in two healthy humans and one dog with a skin infection.

But in a third study, researchers in Germany reported that pet ownership does not appear to be a significant risk factor for colonization with MDR organisms (MDROs).

Research – In vitro antimicrobial effects of Myristica fragrans essential oil on foodborne pathogens and its influence on beef quality during refrigerated storage

Wiley Online

Nutmeg (Myristica fragrans) seed was subjected to the hydro‐distillation method to extract its essential oil (NEO). Its main constituents were α‐pinene (20.16%), sabinene (14.45%), and β‐pinene (13.26%) with great antimicrobial and antioxidant actions. A novel edible coating was then fabricated based on the sage seed mucilage (SSM) and NEO, to ameliorate the quality and shelf‐life of beef slices. The NEO‐loaded SSM coating was able to significantly decrease the population of total viable count, Escherichia coliStaphylococcus aureus, psychrotrophic bacteria, and fungi. Moreover, lipid oxidation of beef slices was remarkably suppressed upon the application of bioactive NEO‐loaded SSM edible coating, as compared with the control by Day 6. The coated beef sample, especially NEO‐rich SSM coated ones perceived a higher consumer acceptance and firmness than the SSM coated and noncoated samples. The SSM edible coating containing NEO could therefore have the potential to control the growth of pathogenic microorganisms and lipid oxidation, and to improve the color stability and sensory properties of meat and meat products.

Research – VA/starch/propolis/anthocyanins rosemary extract composite films as active and intelligent food packaging materials

Wiley Online

Active and intelligent food packaging films has taken more importance over conventional packaging. The aim of this study was to develop active and intelligent food packaging films based on bio‐degradable polymers like polyvinyl alcohol and starch, incorporated with natural additives, that is, propolis extract (PE) and Anthocyanin. Boric acid was used as a cross‐linker. The results proved the compatibility of films mixture. The mechanical strength was also measured and highest value was achieved 6.1 MPa for films containing 20% PE. Moreover, the maximum zone of inhabitation, that is, 21 and 15 mm, was also achieved at same composition against Escherichia coli and methicillin‐resistant Staphylococcus aureus, respectively. Furthermore, all films had shown great color response against different pH ranging from 2 to 14. Finally, food spoilage test was performed using pasteurized milk. Films responded visibly by changing color and protected milk from spoilage. Hence, formulated bio‐degradable active and intelligent films can be used as food packaging material.

Research – Treatment of fresh produce with a Salmonella‐targeted bacteriophage cocktail is compatible with chlorine or peracetic acid and more consistently preserves the microbial community on produce

Wiley Online

Diets rich in minimally processed foods are associated with numerous health benefits, in part, due to their diverse, natural microbiota. However, antimicrobials, such as chlorine and peracetic acid (PAA), that are used to address food safety concerns may damage the natural microflora of fresh produce. One promising approach for targeting pathogenic bacteria in foods without impacting the normal food microbiota are bacteriophages. In this study, we observed that combinational treatment of conventional antimicrobials (PAA and chlorine) and bacteriophages, specifically the Salmonella‐targeted preparation SalmoFresh, retained the bactericidal effectiveness of individual interventions, and in some cases, achieved substantially increased efficacy. Additionally, the bacterial microbiomes of farm fresh and organic produce were less affected after phage treatment compared to PAA and chlorine. Finally, our study revealed that resistance rates against SalmoFresh were relatively minor and unaffected by the stresses introduced after chemical washes and/or bacteriophage treatment.

Research – Eugenol as an antimicrobial wash treatment reduces Campylobacter jejuni in postharvest poultry

Wiley Online


The efficacy of the natural plant‐derived compound, eugenol (EG), as an antimicrobial wash treatment to reduce Campylobacter jejuni in postharvest poultry was investigated. The antimicrobial efficacy of EG was studied as a suspension, emulsion, or nanoemulsion treatment (two trials each). In each trial, chicken skin samples were inoculated with C. jejuni (∼7.2 Log CFU/sample), washed with treatments (0, 0.125, 0.25, 0.5, 1, or 2% EG corresponds to 0, 7.61, 15.22, 30.45, 60.90, or 121.8 mM, respectively) for 1 min, drip dried for 2 min, and then processed at 0, 8, and 24 hr of refrigerated storage (n = 5 samples/treatment/time point). All doses of the EG suspension consistently reduced C. jejuni counts with the greatest reduction (>2.0 Log CFU/sample) for the 2% dose when compared with controls (p < .05). EG emulsions or nanoemulsions did not provide any additional reduction in C. jejuni when compared to EG suspension. Our results suggest that EG could be an effective postharvest intervention strategy for reducing C. jejuni contamination on poultry products.

Practical Applications

Campylobacter jejuni, a leading cause of foodborne illness in humans, is strongly associated with the consumption of contaminated poultry products. Interventions reducing C. jejuni contamination in poultry would reduce the risk of subsequent human infections. In this study, the antimicrobial efficacy of eugenol was studied in three different delivery systems; suspension, emulsion, or nanoemulsion. Our results demonstrated that eugenol was effective in reducing C. jejuni counts on chicken skin and can be used as a potential strategy to reduce Campylobacter on poultry products.