Fate of Staphylococcus aureus in cheese treated by ultrahigh pressure homogenization and high hydrostatic pressure.


We evaluated the influence of ultrahigh pressure homogenization (UHPH) treatment applied to milk containing Staphylococcus aureus CECT 976 before cheese making, and the benefit of applying a further high hydrostatic pressure (HHP) treatment to cheese. The evolution of Staph. aureus counts during 30 d of storage at 8 degrees C and the formation of staphylococcal enterotoxins were also assessed. Milk containing approximately 7.3 log(10) cfu/mL of Staph. aureus was pressurized using a 2-valve UHPH machine, applying 330 and 30 MPa at the primary and the secondary homogenizing valves, respectively. Milk inlet temperatures (T(in)) of 6 and 20 degrees C were assayed. Milk was used to elaborate soft-curd cheeses (UHPH cheese), some of which were additionally submitted to 10-min HHP treatments of 400 MPa at 20 degrees C (UHPH+HHP cheese). Counts of Staph. aureus were measured on d 1 (24 h after manufacture or immediately after HHP treatment) and after 2, 15, and 30 d of ripening at 8 degrees C. Counts of control cheeses not pressure-treated were approximately 8.5 log(10) cfu/g showing no significant decreases during storage. In cheeses made from UHPH treated milk at T(in) of 6 degrees C, counts of Staph. aureus were 5.0 +/- 0.3 log(10) cfu/g at d 1; they decreased significantly to 2.8 +/- 0.2 log(10) cfu/g on d 15, and were below the detection limit (1 log(10) cfu/g) after 30 d of storage. The use of an additional HHP treatment had a synergistic effect, increasing reductions up to 7.0 +/- 0.3 log(10) cfu/g from d 1. However, for both UHPH and UHPH+HHP cheeses in the 6 degrees C T(in) samples, viable Staph. aureus cells were still recovered. For samples of the 20 degrees C T(in) group, complete inactivation of Staph. aureus was reached after 15 d of storage for both UHPH and UHPH+HHP cheese. Staphylococcal enterotoxins were found in controls but not in UHPH or UHPH+HHP treated samples. This study shows a new approach for significantly improving cheese safety by means of using UHPH or its combination with HHP.

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@article{LpezPedemonte2006FateOS, title={Fate of Staphylococcus aureus in cheese treated by ultrahigh pressure homogenization and high hydrostatic pressure.}, author={Tom{\'a}s J L{\'o}pez-Pedemonte and Wilfido Jos{\'e} Bri{\~n}ez and Artur Xavier Roig-Sagu{\'e}s and Buenaventura Guamis}, journal={Journal of dairy science}, year={2006}, volume={89 12}, pages={4536-44} }