Advances and Future Challenges to Microbial Food Safety—Volume II

A special issue of Foods (ISSN 2304-8158). This special issue belongs to the section "Food Microbiology".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 May 2024 | Viewed by 3291

Special Issue Editor


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Guest Editor
AZTI, Food Research, Basque Research and Technology Alliance (BRTA), Derio, Spain
Interests: food safety; food microbiology; fermented foods; LAB; yeast; microbial isolation; bacteriophages; food-borne pathogens; high pressure processing; emerging technologies; immunochemical methods; bacterial cell culture; biotechnology; protein purification; project management; SDS-PAGE; western blot analysis
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Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Consumers’ growing demand for products with adequate nutritional, physicochemical and sensory characteristics has challenged both the food industry and the academic sector, necessitating a constant effort in the development of innovative strategies to produce new products with optimal characteristics that assure microbial food safety.

Recent advances in food processing technologies, as well as rapid detection methods, are limiting foodborne disease emergences. The development and application of novel preservatives and functional/active food packaging for the biocontrol of foodborne pathogens are also under study.

However, despite significant efforts by all parties involved, there is still a considerable burden of foodborne illness, in which microorganisms play a prominent role. Therefore, it is necessary to establish a reference publication to show the recent ground-breaking developments, potential applications and future trends that complement those already in use.

Consequently, we invite contributions to this Special Issue dealing with a wide range of fields, such as new developments in microbial monitoring, predictive microbiology, or novel strategies for pathogen control (e.g., technologies, natural preservatives, and hurdle strategies), regarding the main drivers of the future of food safety.

Dr. Maria Lavilla
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Foods is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2900 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • food safety
  • foodborne pathogens
  • natural preservatives
  • biocontrol
  • microbial detection
  • microbial inactivation
  • emerging technologies
  • active packaging

Published Papers (3 papers)

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Research

17 pages, 3174 KiB  
Article
Differences in Biofilm Formation of Listeria monocytogenes and Their Effects on Virulence and Drug Resistance of Different Strains
by Yujuan Yang, Xiangxiang Kong, Bing Niu, Jielin Yang and Qin Chen
Foods 2024, 13(7), 1076; https://doi.org/10.3390/foods13071076 - 1 Apr 2024
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Abstract
Listeria monocytogenes is recognized as one of the primary pathogens responsible for foodborne illnesses. The ability of L. monocytogenes to form biofilms notably increases its resistance to antibiotics such as ampicillin and tetracycline, making it exceedingly difficult to eradicate. Residual bacteria within the [...] Read more.
Listeria monocytogenes is recognized as one of the primary pathogens responsible for foodborne illnesses. The ability of L. monocytogenes to form biofilms notably increases its resistance to antibiotics such as ampicillin and tetracycline, making it exceedingly difficult to eradicate. Residual bacteria within the processing environment can contaminate food products, thereby posing a significant risk to public health. In this study, we used crystal violet staining to assess the biofilm-forming capacity of seven L. monocytogenes strains and identified ATCC 19112 as the strain with the most potent biofilm-forming. Subsequent fluorescence microscopy observations revealed that the biofilm-forming capacity was markedly enhanced after two days of culture. Then, we investigated into the factors contributing to biofilm formation and demonstrated that strains with more robust extracellular polymer secretion and self-agglutination capabilities exhibited a more pronounced ability to form biofilms. No significant correlation was found between surface hydrophobicity and biofilm formation capability. In addition, we found that after biofilm formation, the adhesion and invasion of cells were enhanced and drug resistance increased. Therefore, we hypothesized that the formation of biofilm makes L. monocytogenes more virulent and more difficult to remove by antibiotics. Lastly, utilizing RT-PCR, we detected the expression levels of genes associated with biofilm formation, including those involved in quorum sensing (QS), flagellar synthesis, and extracellular polymer production. These genes were significantly upregulated after biofilm formation. These findings underscore the critical relationship between extracellular polymers, self-agglutination abilities, and biofilm formation. In conclusion, the establishment of biofilms not only enhances L. monocytogenes’ capacity for cell invasion and adhesion but also significantly increases its resistance to drugs, presenting a substantial threat to food safety. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances and Future Challenges to Microbial Food Safety—Volume II)
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15 pages, 1480 KiB  
Article
A Predictive Assessment of Ochratoxin A’s Effects on Oxidative Stress Parameters and the Fermentation Ability of Yeasts Using Neural Networks
by Željko Jakopović, Davor Valinger, Karla Hanousek Čiča, Jasna Mrvčić, Ana-Marija Domijan, Iva Čanak, Deni Kostelac, Jadranka Frece and Ksenija Markov
Foods 2024, 13(3), 408; https://doi.org/10.3390/foods13030408 - 26 Jan 2024
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Abstract
The aim of this paper was to examine the effect of different OTA concentrations on the parameters of oxidative stress (glutathione (GSH) and malondialdehyde (MDA) concentrations) and glucose utilization in ethanol production by wine yeasts. In addition to the above, artificial neural networks [...] Read more.
The aim of this paper was to examine the effect of different OTA concentrations on the parameters of oxidative stress (glutathione (GSH) and malondialdehyde (MDA) concentrations) and glucose utilization in ethanol production by wine yeasts. In addition to the above, artificial neural networks (ANN) were used to predict the effects of different OTA concentrations on the fermentation ability of yeasts and oxidative stress parameters. The obtained results indicate a negative influence of OTA (4 µg mL−1) on ethanol production after 12 h. For example, K. marxianus produced 1.320 mg mL−1 of ethanol, while in the control sample 1.603 µg mL−1 of ethanol was detected. However, after 24 h, OTA had no negative effect on ethanol production, since it was higher (7.490 and 3.845 mg mL−1) in comparison to control samples. Even low concentrations of OTA affect GSH concentrations, with the highest being detected after 12 and 24 h (up to 16.54 µM), while MDA concentrations are affected by higher OTA concentrations, with the highest being detected at 24 h (1.19 µM). The obtained results with the use of ANNs showed their potential for quantification purposes based on experimental data, while the results of ANN prediction models have shown to be useful for predictions of what outcomes different concentrations of OTA that were not part of experiment will have on the fermentation capacity and oxidative stress parameters of yeasts. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances and Future Challenges to Microbial Food Safety—Volume II)
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8 pages, 790 KiB  
Communication
Antibacterial Activity of Hexanol Vapor In Vitro and on the Surface of Vegetables
by Daisuke Kyoui, Yuka Saito, Akifumi Takahashi, Gou Tanaka, Runa Yoshida, Yoshiyuki Maegaki, Taketo Kawarai, Hirokazu Ogihara and Chise Suzuki
Foods 2023, 12(16), 3097; https://doi.org/10.3390/foods12163097 - 17 Aug 2023
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 950
Abstract
Hexanol is a volatile alcohol and a major component of plant essential oils (EOs). However, the antibacterial activity of hexanol vapor has not been well studied. This study aimed to evaluate the antibacterial activity of hexanol. In this study, seven food-related bacteria were [...] Read more.
Hexanol is a volatile alcohol and a major component of plant essential oils (EOs). However, the antibacterial activity of hexanol vapor has not been well studied. This study aimed to evaluate the antibacterial activity of hexanol. In this study, seven food-related bacteria were exposed to 1-, 2- or 3-hexanol vapor on agar media to evaluate their growth. Additionally, the total viable counts in three vegetables when exposed to 1-hexanol vapor were measured. The results showed that 1-hexanol exhibited antibacterial effects against Gram-negative bacteria but did not affect Gram-positive bacteria. However, compounds 2- and 3-hexanol did not show antimicrobial activity against any bacteria. For the vegetables, exposure to 1-hexanol vapor decreased the total viable bacterial counts in cabbage and carrot and inhibited bacterial growth in eggplants. In cabbage, 1-hexanol vapor at concentrations over 50 ppm decreased the total viable count within 72 h, and 25 ppm of vapor showed bacteriostatic activity for 168 h. However, 1-hexanol vapor also caused discoloration in cabbage. In summary, 1-hexanol has the potential to act as an antibacterial agent, but further studies are required for practical use. Moreover, the study results may help determine the antimicrobial activity of various EOs in the future. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances and Future Challenges to Microbial Food Safety—Volume II)
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