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Toxins 2018, 10(12), 502; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxins10120502

Influence of Food Matrices on the Stability and Bioavailability of Abrin

Foodborne Toxin Detection and Prevention Research Unit, Western Regional Research Center, Agricultural Research Services, United States Department of Agriculture, 800 Buchanan Street, Albany, CA 94710, USA
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Received: 31 October 2018 / Revised: 19 November 2018 / Accepted: 23 November 2018 / Published: 1 December 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Foodborne Toxins: Pathogenesis and Novel Control Measures)
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Abstract

Abrin, a highly toxic plant toxin, is a potential bioterror weapon. Work from our laboratory and others have shown that abrin is highly resistant to both thermal and pH inactivation methods. We sought to evaluate the effectiveness of selected food processing thermal inactivation conditions against abrin in economically important food matrices (whole milk, non-fat milk, liquid egg, and ground beef). The effectiveness of toxin inactivation was measured via three different assays: (1) In vitro cell free translation (CFT) assay, (2) Vero cell culture cytotoxicity; and the in vivo mouse intraperitoneal (ip) bioassay. For both whole and non-fat milk, complete inactivation was achieved at temperatures of 80 °C for 3 min or 134 °C for 60 s, which were higher than the normal vat/batch pasteurization or the high temperature short time pasteurization (HTST). Toxin inactivation in liquid egg required temperatures of 74 °C for 3 min higher than suggested temperatures for scrambled eggs (22% solids) and plain whole egg. Additionally, the ground beef (80:20%) matrix was found to be inhibitory for full toxin activity in the mouse bioassay while retaining some activity in both the cell free translation assay and Vero cell culture cytotoxicity assay. View Full-Text
Keywords: Abrin; Abrus precatorius; mouse bioassay; food safety; thermal inactivation; food matrices; milk; eggs; ground beef; pasteurization Abrin; Abrus precatorius; mouse bioassay; food safety; thermal inactivation; food matrices; milk; eggs; ground beef; pasteurization
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).
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Tam, C.C.; Henderson, T.D., II; Stanker, L.H.; Cheng, L.W. Influence of Food Matrices on the Stability and Bioavailability of Abrin. Toxins 2018, 10, 502.

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