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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Related Topics

Research Project: Molecular Mechanisms Underlying the Interactions of Enteric Pathogens with Postharvest Leafy Vegetables

Location: Produce Safety and Microbiology Research

2013 Annual Report


1a.Objectives (from AD-416):
Identify the molecular mechanisms that underlie the interaction of enteric pathogens with fresh-cut leafy vegetables.


1b.Approach (from AD-416):
Transcriptomics in Salmonella and pathogenic E. coli; bacterial population dynamics on fresh-cut lettuce and spinach; and use of lettuce lines and Arabidopsis mutants that are defective in specific basal defense signaling pathways. Documents Reimbursable with National Center for Food Safety and Technology (AFRI).Log 42224. Formerly 5325-42000-044-10R 05/05/11


3.Progress Report:

Using RNAseq technology, ARS scientists at Albany, California, have characterized the gene expression profile of E. coli O157:H7 in lettuce under modified atmosphere packaging conditions, and identified several genes that have a role in the tolerance of the pathogen to various stresses resulting from lettuce shredding and packaging under low oxygen tension. This research relates to Objective 1: Identify and characterize the microbial genes that are involved in the attachment, colonization and survival of enteric pathogens on produce, and Objective 2: Determine the genetic and biochemical factors in plants that effect the attachment, growth and survival of human pathogens in/on plants. The study pertains to NP108 Problem Statement 1B Systems Biology and addresses the need to understand, utilizing “omics”, the effect of environmental conditions (in this case, MAP fresh-cut lettuce) on human pathogens, and determine how the pathogen may in turn influence conditions in that environment.


Last Modified: 9/29/2014
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