Surrogates for validation of electron beam irradiation of foods. Academic Article uri icon


  • The aim of this study was to identify a potential surrogate to describe the radiation sensitivity of the most common pathogens encountered in fruits. Three pathogens: Escherichia coli O157:H7 933, Listeria monocytogenes ATCC 51414, and Salmonella Poona, and five non-pathogens: E. coli K-12 MG1655, Listeria innocua Seeliger 1983 (NRRL B-33003 and NRRl B-33014), Enterobacter aerogenes, and Salmonella LT2 were inoculated (populations of 10(7)-10(9) CFU/ml) into model food systems (10% w/w gelatin) and exposed to doses up to 1.0 kGy using a 2 MeV Van der Graaf linear accelerator. The non-pathogen E. coli K-12 MG1655 was highly resistant to radiation (D(10)=0.88 kGy) in comparison to the other strains while L. monocytogenes was the more radiation-resistant pathogen (D(10)=1.09 kGy). Thus, E. coli K-12 MG1655 could be a suitable surrogate for e-beam studies with L. monocytogenes as the indicator pathogen. L. innocua strains were more radiation-sensitive (D(10)=0.66, 0.72 kGy) than their pathogenic counterpart. S. Poona and E. coli O157:H7 were even more radiation-sensitive (D(10)=0.38, 0.36 kGy, respectively). S. LT2 was the least radiation-resistant pathogen with D(10)=0.12 kGy. In a later study, the radiation resistance of the pathogens and the surrogate was evaluated when inoculated in a real food (i.e., fresh cantaloupe). The D(10) values obtained in this experiment were higher than those obtained with the model foods. However, the surrogate was still more radiation-resistant and could therefore be used to indicate decontamination of the target pathogens under electron beam irradiation.

published proceedings

  • Int J Food Microbiol

altmetric score

  • 12

author list (cited authors)

  • Rodriguez, O., Castell-Perez, M. E., Ekpanyaskun, N., Moreira, R. G., & Castillo, A.

citation count

  • 32

complete list of authors

  • Rodriguez, Oscar||Castell-Perez, M Elena||Ekpanyaskun, Nont||Moreira, Rosana G||Castillo, Alejandro

publication date

  • January 1, 2006 11:11 AM