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Estimation of accumulated lethality under pressure-assisted thermal processing
journal contributionposted on 2014-03-01, 00:00 authored by L T Nguyen, Vaidya Balasubramaniam, W Ratphitagsanti
A study was conducted to develop an integrated process lethality model for pressure-assisted thermal processing (PATP) taking into consideration the lethal contribution of both pressure and heat on spore inactivation. Assuming that the momentary inactivation rate was dependent on the survival ratio and momentary pressure-thermal history, a differential equation was formulated and numerically solved using the Runge-Kutta method. Published data on combined pressure-heat inactivation of Bacillus amyloliquefaciens spores were used to obtain model kinetic parameters that considered both pressure and thermal effects. The model was experimentally validated under several process scenarios using a pilot-scale high-pressure food processor. Using first-order kinetics in the model resulted in the overestimation of log reduction compared to the experimental values. When the n th-order kinetics was used, the computed accumulated lethality and the log reduction values were found to be in reasonable agreement with the experimental data. Within the experimental conditions studied, spatial variation in process temperature resulted up to 3.5 log variation in survivors between the top and bottom of the carrier basket. The predicted log reduction of B. amyloliquefaciens spores in deionized water and carrot purée had satisfactory accuracy (1.07-1.12) and regression coefficients (0.83-0.92). The model was also able to predict log reductions obtained during a double-pulse treatment conducted using a pilot-scale high-pressure processor. The developed model can be a useful tool to examine the effect of combined pressure-thermal treatment on bacterial spore lethality and assess PATP microbial safety. © 2013 Springer Science+Business Media New York.