Submitted to: Journal of Food Protection
Publication Type: Review Article
Publication Acceptance Date: 12/20/2008
Publication Date: 5/1/2009
Citation: Wesche, A.M., Gurtler, J., Marks, B.P., Ryser, E.T. 2009. Stress, Sublethal Injury, Resuscitation and Virulence of Bacterial Foodborne Pathogens. Journal of Food Protection. 72(5):1121-1138.
Technical Abstract: Environmental stress and food preservation methods (e.g., heating, chilling, acidity, and alkalinity) are known to induce adaptive responses within the bacterial cell. Microorganisms that survive a given stress often gain resistance to that stress or other stresses via cross-protection. The physiological state of a bacterium is an important consideration when studying its response to food preservation techniques. This article reviews sublethal injury of bacteria, stresses that cause this injury, cellular repair and response mechanisms, the role of reactive oxygen species in bacterial injury and resuscitation, and the potential for cross-protection and enhanced virulence as a result of various stress conditions.