Academic article

Characterisation of the dominant bacterial population in modified atmosphere packaged farmed halibut (Hippoglossus hippoglossus) based on 16S rDNA-DGGE

Hovda, Maria Befring; Sivertsvik, Morten; Lunestad, Bjørn Tore; Lorentzen, Grete; Rosnes, Jan Thomas

Publication details

Journal: Food Microbiology, vol. 24, p. 362–371, 2007

Publisher: Elsevier

International Standard Numbers:
Printed: 0740-0020
Electronic: 1095-9998

Open Access: none


It is not well understood why Atlantic halibut (Hippoglossus hippoglossus) has longer shelf-life than most other white fish species. Our
approach was to examine the microbiological diversity of the spoilage microbiota during modified atmosphere (MA) packaging of
farmed Atlantic halibut. Portions were packaged with gas mixtures of CO2:N2 and CO2:O2 (50%:50%) and with air as a reference. The
packages were stored at 4 1C and samples were taken 6 times during the 23 days of storage. Analyses with molecular techniques (PCRDGGE)
determined profiles of the bacterial populations in the various samples and sequencing detected the bacterial species present. In
addition, samples were analysed for microbial, chemical and sensory parameters. The shelf-life was 10–13 days when stored in air and
between 13 and 20 days for MA packages, with oxygen-enriched packages suggested as the better gas mixture, based on microbial growth
and sensory scores. From sequence analyses of the bacterial population Photobacterium phosphoreum and Pseudomonas spp. were found
to dominate in the halibut. Brochothrix thermosphacta was found in most samples at the end of the storage period. Shewanella
putrefaciens was found sporadically and in low concentrations based on microbial methods, but not detected by PCR-DGGE.
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