Drexel University researchers reveal in a new study that plasma is efficient at killing pathogens on uncooked poultry. Raw chicken contaminated with Campylobacter jejuni and Salmonella enterica was treated with plasma for different periods of time. The plasma either eliminated or virtually eliminated bacteria in low levels from skinless chicken breast and chicken skin.
When bacteria levels were high, the plasma appreciably decreased contamination. The “Nonthermal Dielectric Barrier Discharge Plasma” does not cook the poultry or change its appearance. The researchers also tested samples of bacteria grown on agar. The plasma application showed that antibiotic resistant strains of bacteria are as vulnerable as wild-type strains.
In related news, Drexel University received a $1 million grant from W.M. Keck Foundation. The grant aims to expand research of plasma interactions and living systems. The Anthony J. Drexel Plasma Institute will be home to the two-year project.