Page Banner

United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Related Topics


Location: Animal Biosciences & Biotechnology Laboratory

2013 Annual Report

1a. Objectives (from AD-416):
Develop the conditions [using dopamine binding technology] to decorate innate surfaces with staphylolytic peptidoglycan hydrolases for use in agriculture and food safety applications, e.g. latex gloves, rubber for milking machines.

1b. Approach (from AD-416):
Collaboration with Israeli scientist who is an expert in dopamine mediated binding. ARS will contribute antimicrobial peptidoglycan hydrolase constructs.

3. Progress Report:
This work supports the National Program 101 mission statement in the area of developing information, tools, and technologies that can be used to improve animal production systems. Significant progress was made on Component 1: Understanding, improving, and effectively using animal genetic and genomic resources. Progress on this project focuses on Problem 1A, the need for developing genome-enabling tools and reagents for livestock (pig and cattle). These tools will not only be useful for traditional animal production research applications (reproduction, growth and development, nutrient intake and utilization, product quality), but will also be used to decrease the environmental footprint of animal production, improve animal health, well-being and resistance to disease, and enhance food safety. The goal of this work is to develop protocols for attaching novel enzyme antimicrobials to agriculturally important surfaces that are often contaminated with a film of bacteria. There has been significant progress in this project with the University of Bar Ilan scientist having demonstrated the binding of unique antimicrobial enzymes, engineered by the ARS scientist at Beltsville Maryland, to both glass and plastic surfaces via a dopamine binding technology. The antimicrobial enzymes maintain their antimicrobial activity. Additionally, a new discovery utilizing nickel ions to enhance the dopamine binding allowed the antimicrobial enzymes to be attached without the need to heat the enzyme, thus allowing for an improved maintenance of activity through reduced loss due to instability of the enzyme after exposure to a high temperature. This new finding has been utilized to attach the antimicrobial enzymes to nanospheres composed of either protein or biopolymer; this has further expanded the application of this technology to minimize in vivo infections, such as for the coating of catheters or eradication of intracellular pathogens. All animal health and human health care workers could benefit from these developments. There are also applications for this technology in food safety and protecting foods during long term storage.

4. Accomplishments

Last Modified: 10/17/2017
Footer Content Back to Top of Page