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Title: Screening of microbial communities associated with endive lettuce during postharvest processing on industrial scale
Authors: Fröhling, A.Rademacher, A.Rumpold, B.Klocke, M.Schlüter, O.
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Issue Date: 2018
Published in: Heliyon Vol. 4 (2018), No. 7
Publisher: Amsterdam : Elsevier B.V.
Abstract: In this study, the composition of the microbial community on endive lettuce (Cichorium endivia) was evaluated during different postharvest processing steps. Microbial community structure was characterized by culture-dependent and culture-independent methods. Endive lettuce was sampled exemplarily at four different stages of processing (raw material, cut endive lettuce, washed endive lettuce, and spin-dried (ready to pack) endive lettuce) and analysed by plate count analysis using non-selective and selective agar plates with subsequent identification of bacteria colonies by matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization time-of light mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF MS). Additionally, terminal-restriction fragment length polymorphism (TRFLP) analysis and 16S rRNA gene nucleotide sequence analysis were conducted. The results revealed structural differences in the lettuce microbiomes during the different processing steps. The most predominant bacteria on endive lettuce were detected by almost all methods. Bacterial species belonging to the families Pseudomonadaceae, Enterobacteriaceae, Xanthomonadaceae, and Moraxellaceae were detected in most of the examined samples including some unexpected potentially human pathogenic bacteria, especially those with the potential to build resistance to antibiotics (e.g., Stenotrophomonas maltophilia (0.9 % in cut sample, 0.4 % in spin-dried sample), Acinetobacter sp. (0.6 % in raw material, 0.9 % in cut sample, 0.9 % in washed sample, 0.4 % in spin-dried sample), Morganella morganii (0.2 % in cut sample, 3 % in washed sample)) revealing the potential health risk for consumers. However, more seldom occurring bacterial species were detected in varying range by the different methods. In conclusion, the applied methods allow the determination of the microbiome's structure and its dynamic changes during postharvest processing in detail. Such a combined approach enables the implementation of tailored control strategies including hygienic design, innovative decontamination techniques, and appropriate storage conditions for improved product safety.
Keywords: Food safety; Food technology; Microbiology
DDC: 570
License: CC BY-NC-ND 4.0 Unported
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