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Antimicrobial proteins derived from plants to combat foodborne diseases

Correspondence to Author:  Ranatoly Biritch, 

Nomad Bioscience GmbH, Germany.


Each year, foodborne pathogenic bacteria including Salmonella, Listeria, Clostridium, Campylobacter, and enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli (EHEC) cause over 1.1 billion illnesses and approximately 400,000 fatalities. There aren’t many methods available right now to inactivate microorganisms on food. Given the growing antibiotic resistance present in practically all foodborne pathogenic microorganisms, it is unsuitable to treat food with standard antibiotics. We suggest applying antimicrobial proteins as food additives or processing aids, such as phage endolysins and bacteriocins. Given the severity of the present food safety problems and the speed at which these product candidates can be approved, it appears hopeful. Generally Recognised as Safe (GRAS) is the US regulatory clearance process. Certain bacterial strains naturally create antimicrobial proteins called bacteriocins, which are non-antibiotic and kill or stop the growth of other bacterial strains belonging to the same or related species. Similar to this, bacteriophages use phage endolysins, which are naturally occurring, non-antibiotic antimicrobial proteins, to lyse their host bacterium. We showed that green plants are capable of producing most bacteriocins and endolysins that are effective against Salmonella, E. Coli, Clostridium, and Listeria. We employed NomadicTM and magnICON, two of our patented production technologies, to manufacture recombinant proteins. Since most antimicrobial proteins are highly expressed in plants, their production should be economically feasible and cost-effective. High action against all main EHEC serotypes as defined by the USDA/FDA is demonstrated by various colicin combinations. Bacteriocins derived from Salmonella enterica, or plant-made salmocins, effectively eradicate a wide variety of Salmonella pathovars. The titers of harmful bacteria in contaminated meats, fruits, and vegetables are effectively reduced by the suggested antibacterial protein mixtures. Our plant-produced colicins were approved by the FDA twice as GRAS status as antimicrobials for use on fruits and vegetables (GRN 593) and meat products (GRN 676). This allowed our colicins to be commercialised as food additives or as tools for food processing to reduce the risk of foodborne E. Coli infections.

All kinds of life have an innate immune response that includes antimicrobial peptides (AMP), also known by its legal name, host defence peptides (HDP). Prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells vary fundamentally, and these distinctions could constitute antimicrobial peptides. These peptides are new and promising therapeutic agents because they are strong, all-purpose antibiotics. It has been demonstrated that antimicrobial peptides can eradicate both Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria, fungi, enveloped viruses, and even altered or malignant cells. It seems that antimicrobial peptides frequently destabilise biological membranes, in contrast to the majority of conventional antibiotics. Plant antimicrobial peptides have been identified from a broad range of species’ roots, seeds, flowers, stems, and leaves. They have demonstrated activity against bacteria, fungus, protozoa, parasites, and cells in addition to plant diseases. Neoplastic. Plants synthesise a very diverse range of AMPs, with different AMPs being produced by various plant species. Defensins, thionins, lipid move proteins, cyclotides, snakins, and hevein-like proteins are among the important categories of AMP, contingent on amino acid sequence homology. The majority of recognised AMPs function by creating membrane pores that allow ions and metabolites to escape, depolarize, interfere with breathing functions, and ultimately kill cells. The membrane lipids’ interaction with amps may be significant due to their amphipathic nature and positive charge at physiological pH. Negatively charged molecules (such as anionic phospholipids, lipopolysaccharides, or teichoic acids) are electrostatically drawn to cationic residues on the peptide, causing them to accumulate on the membrane surface.

Collapse starts when the concentration hits a certain point. The barrel-scope model, the wormhole (or toroidal pore) model, and the carpet model are the three primary models that have been put forth. According to the barrel-bearing mechanism, foodborne infections, often known as food poisoning, are frequently brought on by bacteria, viruses, parasites, chemicals, or other agents that contaminate food. Despite being one of the healthiest food supplies in the world, the federal government calculates that every year there are roughly 48 years worth of foodborne illness cases. According to this statistic, 1 in 6 Americans get sick from eating tainted food, which leads to about 128,000 hospital admissions and 3,000 fatalities. When humans consume food or beverages tainted with microorganisms, chemicals, or poisons, foodborne disease can persist. The intensity and symptoms of food poisoning can be influenced by a number of factors, including age and compromised immune systems. Upon discovering an outbreak, the FDA’sThere are many different kinds, shapes, and characteristics of bacteria, which are the most frequent cause of foodborne illness. Because they can create spores, certain hazardous bacteria—like Clostridium botulinum, C. perfringens, Bacillus subtilus, and Bacillus cereus—are extremely resistant to heat. Certain bacteria, like Clostridium botulinum and Staphylococcus aureus, can produce poisons that are resistant to heat. The majority of diseases have an ideal development temperature of 20 to 45 degrees Celsius, making them mesophilic. Nonetheless, certain foodborne microorganisms, such as psychrotrophs.


Ranatoly Biritch. Antimicrobial proteins derived from plants to combat foodborne diseases. The Journal of Clinical Pathology 2024.

Journal Info

  • Journal Name: The Journal of Clinical Pathology
  • Impact Factor: 1.7
  • ISSN: 2995-8598
  • DOI: 10.52338/Tjocp
  • Short Name: TJOCP
  • Acceptance rate: 55%
  • Volume: 6 (2024)
  • Submission to acceptance: 25 days
  • Acceptance to publication: 10 days


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