About this Research Topic
Microorganisms use signalling molecules as inter- and intracellular communication system, known as quorum sensing. Quorum sensing represents a consistent problem not only in general for human health but also in the food industry, playing herein a major role in food spoilage, biofilm formation, and food-related pathogenesis. Moreover, as for human health, neither the use of the most modern techniques of food processing and preservation are capable, in some cases, to avoid spoilage by pathogenic bacteria and fungi. Knowledge of bacterial quorum-sensing signalling systems can help in monitoring the growth of undesirable food-related microorganisms. The application and evaluation on the effectiveness of essential oils, as inhibitors of the triggering of quorum sensing mechanisms could also provide the food industry with systems useful for the eradication of food contaminants. The study of new sources of natural extracts, for instance from lichens (rich of polyphenols), or taking place from the sea (i.e. algal phlorotannins) is providing not only to science but also to industry new weapons capable of better fighting the phenomenon of microbial pathogenicity. New sensors or new micro-technologies could also be useful to be used as novel food preservatives for maintaining food integrity and enhancing food safety. Herein we would discuss the role and the mechanism used by such natural substances to block the QS activity, in bacteria and fungi, and how the development of new technologies and devices could help to quickly monitor the formation and presence of QS signals and formation of microbial biofilms in foods.
Specifically, we are interested in exploring:
- The identification of natural compounds as QS inhibitors in single and polymicrobial food infections;
- The activity of natural compounds in blocking the formation of single and polymicrobial biofilms;
- The development of new systems of food packaging capable to inhibit the QS and biofilm formation by microorganisms in food;
- The development of new systems to monitor the presence of QS molecules and biofilms within food.
The Research Topic welcomes article types including original research, methods, reviews, and mini-reviews.
Keywords: Food Contamination, Biofilm-associated food infections, Communication Signalling, Natural Extracts, Essential Oils, Quorum Sensing Susceptibility, New systems of monitoring QS molecules and biofilms
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