In situ evaluation of paenibacillus alvei in reducing carriage of salmonella enterica serovar newport on whole tomato plants

Sarah Allard, Alexander Enurah, Errol Strain, Patricia Millner, Steven L. Rideout, Eric W. Brown, Jie Zheng

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

22 Scopus citations

Abstract

Recently, tomatoes have been implicated as a primary vehicle in food-borne outbreaks of Salmonella enterica serovar Newport and other Salmonella serovars. Long-term intervention measures to reduce Salmonella prevalence on tomatoes remain elusive for growing and postharvest environments. A naturally occurring bacterium identified by 16S rRNA gene sequencing as Paenibacillus alvei was isolated epiphytically from plants native to the Virginia Eastern Shore tomato-growing region. After initial antimicrobial activity screening against Salmonella and 10 other bacterial pathogens associated with the human food supply, strain TS-15 was further used to challenge an attenuated strain of S. Newport on inoculated fruits, leaves, and blossoms of tomato plants in an insect-screened high tunnel with a split-plot design. Survival of Salmonella after inoculation was measured for groups with and those without the antagonist at days 0, 1, 2, and 3 and either day 5 for blossoms or day 6 for fruits and leaves. Strain TS-15 exhibited broad-range antimicrobial activity against both major food-borne pathogens and major bacterial phytopathogens of tomato. After P. alvei strain TS-15 was applied onto the fruits, leaves, and blossoms of tomato plants, the concentration of S. Newport declined significantly (P≤0.05) compared with controls. Astonishingly, >90% of the plants had no detectable levels of Salmonella by day 5 for blossoms. The naturally occurring antagonist strain TS-15 is highly effective in reducing the carriage of Salmonella Newport on whole tomato plants. The application of P. alvei strain TS-15 is a promising approach for reducing the risk of Salmonella contamination during tomato production.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3842-3849
Number of pages8
JournalApplied and environmental microbiology
Volume80
Issue number13
DOIs
StatePublished - 2014

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Biotechnology
  • Food Science
  • Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology
  • Ecology

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