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RAP opportunity at U.S. Army CCDC Soldier Center     CCDC SC

The Enhanced Quasi-Chemical Model for Bacterial Spore Decontamination by High Pressure


U.S. Army CCDC Soldier Center, Food Technology

opportunity location
39.01.02.B7156 Natick, MA 017605020


name email phone
Christopher J Doona 508-206-3970


An opportunity exists to study mechanisms of bacterial spore activation, germination, and inactivation using novel methods of decontamination and/or emerging non-thermal food processing technologies, such as high hydrostatic pressure, cool plasma, chemical sterilants, singlet oxygen trapping and releasing compounds, microwave heating, and ohmic heating using the novel modeling tool called the Enhanced Quasi-chemical Kinetics (EQCK) model. The mechanistic EQCK model is based on the mathematics of ordinary differential equations that allows for unique applications to microbial germination and inactivation and has been published in 2016 for its uses with high-pressure processing through the international scientific community to ensure the safety of pasteurized or sterilized foods. This research begins with studies to understand the mechanisms of bacterial spore germination and inactivation using a variety of spore mutants, germinants (nutrient and non-nutrient), and lethal agents. We have also published a variant called the Quasi-chemical germination kinetics model that focuses on discerning germination mechanisms of bacterial spores. The spore-forming organisms of interest include B. anthracis Sterne, Bacillus amyloliquifaciens, B. subtils, and B.stearothermophilus. We have also developed a mathematical model linking the micoribla inactivation kinetics with yields of intrinsic chemical marker production in processed foodstuffs. Our goals also include determining the relationship of pressure and temperature--individually and in concert--with the rate of microbial inactivation in actual or surrogate food systems (starches and proteins), to ensure food safety while maximizing the potential benefits of these processes.



Doona CJ, Feeherry FE, Kustin K, et al: A Quasi-chemical Model for Bacterial Spore Germination Kinetics by High Pressure. Food Engineering Reviews, 2017. doi:10.1007/s12393-016-9155-1

Doona CJ, Feeherry,FE, Ross EW, Kustin K: Chemical Kinetics for the Microbial Safety of Foods Treated with High Pressure or Hurdles. Food Engineering Reviews 8: 272, 2016. doi:10.1007/s12393-015-9138-7

Doona CJ, et al: The Quasi-chemical and Weibull Distribution Models of Nonlinear Inactivation Kinetics of Escherichia coli ATCC 11229 by High Pressure Processing, in High Pressure Processing of Foods. Edited by Doona CJ, Feeherry FE. Ames (Iowa): Blackwell Publishing, 2007: 115


key words
Enhanced quasi-chemical model; Spore activation; Germination; Inactivation; Predictive microbiology; High pressure;


Citizenship:  Open to U.S. citizens and permanent residents
Level:  Open to Postdoctoral and Senior applicants


Base Stipend Travel Allotment Supplementation
$63,800.00 $2,000.00

$5,000 Supplement for Doctorates in Engineering & Computer Science

Experience Supplement:
Postdoctoral and Senior Associates will receive an appropriately higher stipend based on the number of years of experience past their PhD.

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