Effective thermal inactivation of the spores of Bacillus cereus biofilms using microwave

Hyong Seok Park, Jungwoo Yang, Hee Jung Choi, Kyoung Heon Kim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Citations (Scopus)


Microwave sterilization was performed to inactivate the spores of biofilms of Bacillus cereus involved in foodborne illness. The sterilization conditions, such as the amount of water and the operating temperature and treatment time, were optimized using statistical analysis based on 15 runs of experimental results designed by the Box-Behnken method. Statistical analysis showed that the optimal conditions for the inactivation of B. cereus biofilms were 14 ml of water, 108°C of temperature, and 15 min of treatment time. Interestingly, response surface plots showed that the amount of water is the most important factor for microwave sterilization under the present conditions. Complete inactivation by microwaves was achieved in 5 min, and the inactivation efficiency by microwave was obviously higher than that by conventional steam autoclave. Finally, confocal laser scanning microscopy images showed that the principal effect of microwave treatment was cell membrane disruption. Thus, this study can contribute to the development of a process to control food-associated pathogens.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1209-1215
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of microbiology and biotechnology
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 2017 Jul 28

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This research was supported by the C1 Gas Refinery Program through the National Research Foundation of Korea funded by MSIP (2016M3D3A1A01913143). The study was performed at the Korea University Food Safety Hall for the Institute of Biomedical Science and Food Safety.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2017 by The Korean Society for Microbiology and Biotechnology.


  • Bacillus cereus
  • Biofilms
  • Inactivation
  • Microwave
  • Response surface methodology

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology


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