Main content area

Modeling the Effect of Abrupt Acid and Osmotic Shifts within the Growth Region and across Growth Boundaries on Adaptation and Growth of Listeria monocytogenes

Le Marc, Y., Skandamis, P.N., Belessi, C.I.A., Merkouri, S.I., George, S.M., Gounadaki, A.S., Schvartzman, S., Jordan, K., Drosinos, E.H., Baranyi, J.
Applied and environmental microbiology 2010 v.76 no.19 pp. 6555-6563
Listeria monocytogenes, acids, adaptation, environmental factors, microorganisms, milk, models, pH
This study aims to model the effects of acid and osmotic shifts on the intermediate lag time of Listeria monocytogenes at 10°C in a growth medium. The model was developed from data from a previous study (C. I. A. Belessi, Y. Le Marc, S. I. Merkouri, A. S. Gounadaki, S. Schvartzman, K. Jordan, E. H. Drosinos, and P. N. Skandamis, submitted for publication) on the effects of osmotic and pH shifts on the kinetics of L. monocytogenes. The predictive ability of the model was assessed on new data in milk. The effects of shifts were modeled through the dependence of the parameter h₀ ("work to be done" prior to growth) induced on the magnitude of the shift and/or the stringency of the new environmental conditions. For shifts across the boundary, the lag time was found to be affected by the length of time for which the microorganisms were kept at growth-inhibiting conditions. The predicted concentrations of L. monocytogenes in milk were overestimated when the effects of this shift were not taken into account. The model proved to be suitable to describe the effects of osmotic and acid shifts observed both within the growth domain and across the growth boundaries of L. monocytogenes.