Desiccation Stress Response in Cronobacters (pp. 279-292)
Authors: (Angelika Lehner, University Zurich, Switzerland)
Abstract: Cronobacter is a newly described genus which includes opportunistic pathogens formerly known as ―Enterobacter sakazakii‖. These organisms have been isolated from a wide variety of sources including powdered infant formula (PIF). Infections in premature infants or neonates have been epidemiologically linked to the ingestion of contaminated infant formula. Therefore, the International Commission on Microbiological Specification for Foods has ranked E. sakazakii (Cronobacter) as ―Severe hazard for restricted populations, life threatening or substantial chronic sequelae of long duration‖. Cronobacter spp. are well known to be resistant to osmotic and dry stresses. Tolerance to desiccation may provide a competitive advantage of these bacteria in dry environments, such as the powdered infant formula and production environments. This chapter focuses on the studies to date on this important survival trait for these emerging pathogens.