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Research Briefs

August 21, 2019

Pathogenic bacteria that stubbornly lurk in some apple-packing facilities may be sheltered and protected by harmless bacteria that are known for their ability to form biofilms, according to Penn State researchers, who suggest the discovery could lead to development of alternative foodborne-pathogen-control strategies.

August 7, 2019

In a series of studies, researchers showed that whole genome analysis can provide highly detailed information on pathogens in a timely fashion. The findings could help public officials prepare treatment and prevention options when disease outbreaks threaten the public.

July 23, 2019

A novel method of processing — using high-pressure jets to spray milk and then quickly drying the spray — yields skim milk powders with enhanced properties and functionality, according to Penn State researchers, who say the discovery may lead to "cleaner" labels on foods.

June 13, 2019

Food's texture affects whether it is eaten, liked or rejected, according to Penn State researchers, who say some people are better at detecting even minor differences in consistency because their tongues can perceive particle sizes.

March 27, 2019

A new technique to spin starch fibers using Lego pieces could have future applications for lab-grown "clean" meat, according to a team of food scientists from Penn State and the University of Alabama.

March 12, 2019

An extract from the seeds of avocados exhibited anti-inflammatory properties in a laboratory study, according to Penn State researchers, and it represents a potential source for novel anti-inflammatory compounds that could be developed as a functional food ingredient or pharmaceuticals.

February 13, 2019

Employing advanced genetic-tracing techniques and sharing the data produced in real time could limit the spread of bacteria — Bacillus cereus — which cause foodborne illness, according to researchers who implemented whole-genome sequencing of a pathogen-outbreak investigation.

January 17, 2019

Andrew Cotter's day does not begin until he's had his "cup of Joe," a ritual he takes seriously as one of a growing group of coffee consumers who grind and brew specialty coffee beans at home for a more flavorful and fragrant experience.

January 3, 2019

A natural antioxidant found in grain bran could preserve food longer and replace synthetic antioxidants currently used by the food industry, according to researchers at Penn State

October 10, 2018

Nearly 15 percent of all chewing gum varieties sold promise to provide health-enhancing supplements to users, so Penn State researchers studied whether two vitamin-supplemented products were effective at delivering vitamins to the body. Their results validate the concept of gum as an effective delivery system for at least some vitamins.

July 18, 2018

High bitter-taste sensitivity is associated with a significantly increased risk of cancer in older British women, according to researchers who conducted a unique study of 5,500 women whose diet, lifestyle and health has been tracked for about 20 years.

April 5, 2018

Manipulating the temperature and the length of time under which cocoa beans are roasted can simultaneously preserve and even boost the potency of some bioactive and antioxidant compounds while protecting desired sensory aspects of chocolate, according to Penn State researchers.

February 15, 2018

Craft chocolate — made with fine flavor cacao beans and valued for its distinctive flavors and high quality — is gaining a fast following, and research underway in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences is aimed at helping bean growers and bar makers benefit from this trend.

July 24, 2017

Scientists may be able to minimize the failure rate of drugs for diseases linked to high-calorie diets, such as colon cancer and type 2 diabetes, if they test treatments using a pig model, according to an international team of researchers.

June 19, 2017

A compound made from grape skins and grape seeds killed colon cancer stem cells in mice, according to researchers. The study, along with previous studies on the low incidence of colon cancer in populations that tend to eat plants, may also offer clues to the role that foods play in suppressing and treating cancer.

May 5, 2017

A team of food science researchers from Penn State College of Agricultural Sciences are launching a promising new venture to produce a line of all-natural, vibrant food colors, dubbed AvoColor, using a compound derived from the seed of the avocado.

April 27, 2017

A diet supplemented with soy protein may be an effective adjunct therapy for inflammatory bowel diseases, Penn State researchers reported after completing a study that included mice and cultured human colon cells.

October 9, 2015

Food Science Professor Gregory R. Ziegler is exploring the commercial potential of a brilliant orange found in avocado pits as a natural food coloring.

October 2, 2015

Smartphones are so ubiquitous, and text messaging and social media activities so common in public places, that no one questions what anyone does with their phone. That pervasiveness allows a phone application to be used in direct, concealed observations without alerting the people being observed.

September 17, 2015

Scientists wonder why some people get so sick and even die after being infected by the foodborne pathogen E.coli O157:H7, while others experience much milder symptoms and recover relatively quickly. Now Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences researchers believe they have discovered an explanation.