Novel phage-based bio-processing of pathogenic Escherichia coli and its biofilms

  • S. A. A. JassimEmail author
  • A. S. Abdulamir
  • F. Abu Bakar
Original Paper


To explore new approaches of phage-based bio-process of specifically pathogenic Escherichia coli bacteria in food products within a short period. One hundred and forty highly lytic designed coliphages were used. Escherichia coli naturally contaminated and Enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli experimentally inoculated samples of lettuce, cabbage, meat, and egg were used. In addition, experimentally produced biofilms of E. coli were tested. A phage concentration of 103 PFU/ml was used for food products immersion, and for spraying of food products, 105 PFU/ml of a phage cocktail was used by applying a 20-s optimal dipping time in a phage cocktail. Food samples were cut into pieces and were either sprayed with or held in a bag immersed in lambda buffer containing a cocktail of 140 phages. Phage bio-processing was successful in eliminating completely E. coli in all processed samples after 48 h storage at 4°C. Partial elimination of E. coli was observed in earlier storage periods (7 and 18 h) at 24° and 37°C. Moreover, E. coli biofilms were reduced >3 log cycles upon using the current phage bio-processing. The use of a phage cocktail of 140 highly lytic designed phages proved highly effective in suppressing E. coli contaminating food products. Proper decontamination/prevention methods of pathogenic E. coli achieved in this study can replace the current chemically less effective decontamination methods.


Bio-process Bacteriophage Phage design Escherichia coli Food products Biofilm 



Complete eradication


Coliphage enterohemorrhagic




Enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli


Log reduction


Phage killing


Standard error



This work has been supported by Arab Biotechnology Company


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • S. A. A. Jassim
    • 1
    Email author
  • A. S. Abdulamir
    • 1
  • F. Abu Bakar
    • 1
  1. 1.Faculty of Food Science and TechnologyUniversiti Putra MalaysiaUPM Serdang SelangorMalaysia

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