Attachment of Shiga toxigenic Escherichia coli to stainless steel

Rivas, Lucia, Fegan, Narelle and Dykes, Gary A. (2007) Attachment of Shiga toxigenic Escherichia coli to stainless steel. International Journal of Food Microbiology, 115 1: 89-94. doi:10.1016/j.ijfoodmicro.2006.10.027

Author Rivas, Lucia
Fegan, Narelle
Dykes, Gary A.
Title Attachment of Shiga toxigenic Escherichia coli to stainless steel
Formatted title
Attachment of Shiga toxigenic Escherichia coli to stainless steel
Journal name International Journal of Food Microbiology   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0168-1605
Publication date 2007-04-01
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1016/j.ijfoodmicro.2006.10.027
Volume 115
Issue 1
Start page 89
End page 94
Total pages 6
Editor L. Cocolin
Place of publication New York, United States
Publisher Elsevier
Language eng
Formatted abstract
Shiga toxigenic Escherichia coli (STEC) are important foodborne pathogens causing gastrointestinal disease worldwide. Bacterial attachment to food surfaces, such as stainless steel may lead to cross contamination of foods and subsequent foodborne disease. A variety of STEC isolates, including E. coli O157:H7/H− strains, were grown in planktonic (broth) and sessile (agar) culture, following which initial attachment to stainless steel was determined using epifluorescence microscopy. Experiments were performed to determine whether the number of bacteria attached to stainless steel differed between STEC strains and between the two modes of growth. No relationship was found between STEC strains and the number of bacteria attached to stainless steel. Five STEC strains, including one non-toxigenic O157 isolate, attached in significantly greater (p < 0.05) numbers to stainless steel following growth in planktonic culture compared to sessile culture. In contrast, two clinical strains of O157:H7 attached in significantly greater (p < 0.05) numbers following growth in sessile culture compared to planktonic culture. Thirteen out of twenty E. coli strains showed no significant difference (p > 0.05) in attachment when grown in planktonic or sessile culture. The change of interfacial free energy between the bacterial strains and stainless steel was calculated and the influence of free energy in attachment was determined. Although a significant variation (p < 0.05) in free energy values was found between STEC strains, no correlation was found between free energy values and bacterial counts on stainless steel. In addition, no correlation was also found between bacterial hydrophobicity and surface charge values or production of surface structures (type I fimbriae or flagella) (previously determined) with the number of bacteria attached to stainless steel. The results of this study suggest that different growth conditions (planktonic and sessile) can influence the attachment of STEC to stainless steel. Factors other than bacterial physicochemical properties and these surface structures may also influence STEC attachment to stainless steel.
Keyword Escherichia coli
Stainless steel
Epifluorescence microscopy
Listeria-monocytogenes strains
Biofilm formation
Beef muscle
Surface characteristics
Abiotic surfaces
Curli fimbriae
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: School of Agriculture and Food Sciences
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Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 32 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
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Created: Mon, 18 Feb 2008, 16:48:15 EST