Use of Bacteriophages to Control Salmonella in Experimentally Contaminated Sprout Seeds

Use of Bacteriophages to Control Salmonella in Experimentally Contaminated Sprout Seeds
June/July 2004
Journal of Food Science: Vol. 69, No. 5

Trials were conducted to evaluate the potential for using bacteriophages to control Salmonella in sprouting seeds. Two phages (Phage-A, capable of lysing S. Typhimurium and S. Enteritidis, and Phage-B, capable of lysing S. Montevideo) were isolated and characterized as members of the Myoviridae and Siphoviridae families, respectively. Salmonella counts increased in all inoculated seeds during soaking and mustard seeds supported greater growth of the inoculated Salmonella than broccoli seeds. A 1.37 log suppression of Salmonella growth was achieved by applying Phage-A on mustard seeds. The mixture of Phage-A and Phage-B caused a 1.50 log suppression of Salmonella growth in the soaking water of broccoli seeds. Host specificity observed in the study stresses the importance of developing phage mixtures that can control a broad range of potential contaminants.

Authors Pao, Randolph, and Westbrook are with Virginia State Univ., Agricultural Research Station, P.O. Box 9061, Petersburg, VA 23806. Author Shen is with the Biology Dept. of the Univ., P.O. Box 9064, Petersburg, Va. Direct inquiries to author Pao (E-mail: spao@vsu.edu).