Development and Assessment of Antifouling Coatings for Food Industries

Antimicrobial Efficacy of Soy Isoflavones against Listeria Monocytogenes

Food-borne pathogenic biofilms in food processing and manufacturing industries have led to food spoilage, bio fouling, and food-borne illnesses. Antimicrobial coatings and films serve as a barrier against bacterial contamination. Chemical or synthetic antimicrobial coatings are widely used today which are not necessarily safe. The demand for antimicrobial coatings in food applications is estimated to reach USD 2.7 billion in the year 2018. With an increased demand for antimicrobial coatings and a need to effectively inhibit microbial biofilms, new coatings need to be developed. The unique properties of soy isoflavones such as biodegradability, biocompatibility and edibility over artificial polymer or chemical based coatings could make it an ideal antimicrobial agent to prevent bacterial growth in a variety of environments.  This research explores the effectiveness of soy isoflavones for use in the food industry by assessing their antimicrobial efficacy against Listeria monocytogenes using microtiter plate assay (MPA) and imaging techniques. The end results of this research would help the food industry to develop natural, novel, eco-friendly, edible, biocompatible, biodegradable, multi-purpose antimicrobial coatings or agents to inhibit the growth of microbial biofilm and provide food safety to the consumers. It would also result in a significant contribution to Ontarian soy growers by increasing their opportunities and adding value to their crop. It would be very significant to the Government in reducing the cost spent on health sector and help in the mission of providing “health and wellness” to the citizens of Canada.

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Bionanotechnology Laboratory
Suresh Neethirajan

School of Engineering
University of Guelph
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Lab: THRN 2133 BioNano Lab

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