Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Researchers discover natural food preservative that kills food-borne bacteria

Date:
August 5, 2011
Source:
University of Minnesota
Summary:
Researchers have discovered and received a patent for a naturally occurring lantibiotic -- a peptide produced by a harmless bacteria -- that could be added to food to kill harmful bacteria like salmonella, E. coli and listeria.

Color-enhanced scanning electron micrograph showing Salmonella typhimurium (red) invading cultured human cells.
Credit: Rocky Mountain Laboratories, NIAID, NIH

University of Minnesota researchers have discovered and received a patent for a naturally occurring lantibiotic -- a peptide produced by a harmless bacteria -- that could be added to food to kill harmful bacteria like salmonella, E. coli and listeria.

Related Articles


The U of M lantibiotic is the first natural preservative found to kill gram-negative bacteria, typically the harmful kind. "It's aimed at protecting foods from a broad range of bugs that cause disease," said Dan O'Sullivan, a professor of food science and nutrition in the university's College of Food, Agricultural and Natural Resource Sciences. "Of the natural preservatives, it has a broader umbrella of bugs that it can protect against."

The lantibiotic could be used to prevent harmful bacteria in meats, processed cheeses, egg and dairy products, canned foods, seafood, salad dressing, fermented beverages and many other foods. In addition to food safety benefits, lantibiotics are easy to digest, nontoxic, do not induce allergies and are difficult for dangerous bacteria to develop resistance against.

O'Sullivan discovered the lantibiotic by chance, while researching the genome of bacteria. He then collaborated with Ju-Hoon Lee, a U of M graduate student, to continue the research. The U of M's Office for Technology Commercialization is currently seeking a licensee for the technology.

In wake of the recent deadly salmonella outbreak, it's important for researchers to continue developing methods to protect foods from dangerous bacteria.

"Salmonella burden has increased more dramatically than any other foodborne illness," said Shaun Kennedy, director of the National Center for Food Protection and Defense. "The largest recall in 2010 for food contamination was eggs contaminated with salmonella."

Salmonella and E. coli, both gram-negative bacteria, account for more than half of all food recalls in the United States. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, salmonella contributes to an estimated 28 percent of more than 3,000 deaths related to foodborne illness each year.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Minnesota. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University of Minnesota. "Researchers discover natural food preservative that kills food-borne bacteria." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 5 August 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/08/110804170036.htm>.
University of Minnesota. (2011, August 5). Researchers discover natural food preservative that kills food-borne bacteria. ScienceDaily. Retrieved March 31, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/08/110804170036.htm
University of Minnesota. "Researchers discover natural food preservative that kills food-borne bacteria." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/08/110804170036.htm (accessed March 31, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Solitair Device Aims to Takes Guesswork out of Sun Safety

Solitair Device Aims to Takes Guesswork out of Sun Safety

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Mar. 31, 2015) — The Solitair device aims to take the confusion out of how much sunlight we should expose our skin to. Small enough to be worn as a tie or hair clip, it monitors the user&apos;s sun exposure by taking into account their skin pigment, location and schedule. Matthew Stock reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Soda, Salt and Sugar: The Next Generation of Taxes

Soda, Salt and Sugar: The Next Generation of Taxes

Washington Post (Mar. 30, 2015) — Denisa Livingston, a health advocate for the Dinι Community Advocacy Alliance, and the Post&apos;s Abby Phillip discuss efforts around the country to make unhealthy food choices hurt your wallet as much as your waistline. Video provided by Washington Post
Powered by NewsLook.com
UnitedHealth Buys Catamaran

UnitedHealth Buys Catamaran

Reuters - Business Video Online (Mar. 30, 2015) — The $12.8 billion merger will combine the U.S.&apos; third and fourth largest pharmacy benefit managers. Analysts say smaller PBMs could also merge. Fred Katayama reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
S. Leone in New Anti-Ebola Lockdown

S. Leone in New Anti-Ebola Lockdown

AFP (Mar. 28, 2015) — Sierra Leone imposed a three-day nationwide lockdown Friday for the second time in six months in a bid to prevent a resurgence of the deadly Ebola virus. Duration: 01:17 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins