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Frontiers of Agricultural Science and Engineering

  • Cover Illustration

    2018, Vol.5  No.3

    With economic development, people worldwide are getting more and more concerned about what they eat on their dinner plates (Photograph by Yefang Hou). In this special issue on “Agri-product Quality and Safety”, different research topics ranging from food safety regulation, the mechanisms, prevention and control of food hazards, and nutrition evaluation are discussed. As presented by Prof. Joseph J. JEN in this special issue, although China is facing many d [Detail] ...

    Table of Contents

ISSN 2095-7505 (Print)
ISSN 2095-977X (Online)
CN 10-1204/S
Postal Subscription Code 80-906

Frontiers of Agricultural Science and Engineering has been added to Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ) on September 12, 2016.

This journal is a member of, and subscribes to the principles of, the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE)

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EDITORIAL
COMMENTS
Global challenges of food safety for China
Joseph J. JEN
Front. Agr. Sci. Eng. . 2018, 5 (3): 291-293.  https://doi.org/10.15302/J-FASE-2017167
Abstract   HTML   PDF (69KB)

Ever since the Melamine event, China has faced challenges of food safety both domestically and globally. With the economic development, the Chinese consumers are demanding high quality, nutritious, and safe foods from the food industry but are not willing to pay higher prices. The Chinese food chain system of mostly small and medium enterprises presents challenges to the government to monitor and implement food safety laws and regulations. The academia and media are learning to take on their responsibilities with some success. Discussions and potential solutions of the global challenges of the five pillars for the food safety in China are presented here.

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Comments on the special issue on Agri-product Quality and Safety
Charles F. SHOEMAKER
Front. Agr. Sci. Eng. . 2018, 5 (3): 294-294.  https://doi.org/10.15302/J-FASE-2018237
Abstract   HTML   PDF (39KB)
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REVIEW
Pest management with biopesticides
James N. SEIBER, Joel COATS, Stephen O. DUKE, Aaron D. GROSS
Front. Agr. Sci. Eng. . 2018, 5 (3): 295-300.  https://doi.org/10.15302/J-FASE-2018238
Abstract   HTML   PDF (188KB)

Biopesticides are attracting interest as alternatives to conventional pesticides but without many of the non-target effects, promising a better record of safety and sustainability in pest control practices. In this article we summarize and discuss the current status and future promise of biopesticides, including how biopesticides use may increase the quality and safety of the food supply.

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Antimicrobial use in food animal production: situation analysis and contributing factors
Ziping WU
Front. Agr. Sci. Eng. . 2018, 5 (3): 301-311.  https://doi.org/10.15302/J-FASE-2018207
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By measuring the quantity and ways in which antimicrobials are used, and reviewing different technical and socioeconomic factors influencing antimicrobial use at farm level, this study discusses the main knowledge gaps in antimicrobial use in food animal production and provides recommendations for future research and policy development. The review reveals that antimicrobial use in food animals exhibit strong regional and species differences, and there are still large information gaps concerning the current state of antimicrobial use. Factors associated with animal health (including antimicrobial resistance), animal health improvement, economic costs and benefits relevant to animal diseases, and potential technological alternatives or alternative systems all have an impact on antimicrobial use on the farm. There is a clear need to resolve the data gap by monitoring antimicrobial use and developing an analytical framework to better understand farmer behaviors under different technical, economic and environmental circumstances.

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Safety issues of methylglyoxal and potential scavengers
Shiming LI, Siyu LIU, Chi-Tang HO
Front. Agr. Sci. Eng. . 2018, 5 (3): 312-320.  https://doi.org/10.15302/J-FASE-2017174
Abstract   HTML   PDF (524KB)

The health safety of methylglyoxal (MGO) has been recognized as a key issue owing to its ultra-high reactivity toward some key biomolecules such as amino acids, proteins, DNA, sulfhydryl- and basic nitrogen-containing compounds, including amino-bearing neurotransmitters. In this review, we have summarized the endo- and exogenous sources of MGO and its accumulation inside the body due to high intake, abnormal glucose metabolism and or malfunctioning glyoxalases, and review the debate concerning the adverse functionality of MGO ingested from foods. Higher than normal concentrations of MGO in the circulatory system and tissues have been found to be closely associated with the production of advanced glycation end products (AGEs), increased oxidative stress, elevated inflammation and RAGE (AGE receptors) activity, which subsequently progresses to a pathological stage of human health, such as diabetes complications, cancer, cardiovascular and degenerative diseases. Having illustrated the mechanisms of MGO trapping in vivo, we advocate the development of efficient and efficacious MGO scavengers, either assisting or enhancing the activity of endogenous glyoxalases to facilitate MGO removal, or providing phytochemicals and functional foods containing them, or pharmaceuticals to irreversibly bind MGO and thus form MGO-complexes that are cleared from the body.

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Impact and inhibitory mechanism of phenolic compounds on the formation of toxic Maillard reaction products in food
Jing TENG, Xiaoqian HU, Ningping TAO, Mingfu WANG
Front. Agr. Sci. Eng. . 2018, 5 (3): 321-329.  https://doi.org/10.15302/J-FASE-2017182
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As one of the dominant reactions occurring during thermal treatment of food, the Maillard reaction not only leads to the formation of aroma, browning color and taste compounds, but also contributes to the formation of some unpleasant toxic substances including acrylamide, heterocyclic amines and advanced glycation end products. Polyphenols, one of the most abundant antioxidants in the human diet, are contained in different kinds of foods. In this review, some recent studies on the impact of dietary polyphenols on the formation of acrylamide, heterocyclic amines and advanced glycation end products formed during the Maillard reaction are summarized, including the research work conducted with both chemical model systems and real food model systems; the possible inhibitory mechanisms of different polyphenols are also summarized and discussed in this review. Basically we found that some dietary polyphenols not only scavenge free radicals, but also react with reactive carbonyl species, thus lowering the formation of toxic Maillard reaction products. This review provides a useful theoretical foundation for the application of polyphenols in food safety, and suggests some directions for further study of natural products as inhibitors against the formation of toxic substances in thermally processed food.

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Cronobacter spp., foodborne pathogens threatening neonates and infants
Qiming CHEN, Yang ZHU, Zhen QIN, Yongjun QIU, Liming ZHAO
Front. Agr. Sci. Eng. . 2018, 5 (3): 330-339.  https://doi.org/10.15302/J-FASE-2018208
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Cronobacter spp. (formerly Enterobacter sakazakii) are special foodborne pathogens. Cronobacter infection can cause necrotizing enterocolitis, sepsis and meningitis in all age groups, especially neonates and infants, with a high fatality of up to 80%, although the infection is rare. Outbreaks of Cronobacter infection are epidemiologically proven to be associated with contaminated powdered infant formula (PIF). Cronobacter spp. can resist dry environments and survive for a long period in food with low water activity. Therefore, Cronobacter spp. have become serious pathogens of neonates and infants, as well as in the dairy industry. In this review, we present the taxonomy, pathogenesis, resistance, detection and control of Cronobacter spp.

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Implications of static in vitro digestion of starch in the presence of dietary fiber
John NSOR-ATINDANA, Maoshen CHEN, Liu WEI, Khin Myat NOE, Yue LI, Fang ZHONG
Front. Agr. Sci. Eng. . 2018, 5 (3): 340-350.  https://doi.org/10.15302/J-FASE-2018209
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Interest in understanding the digestion behavior of starch in the presence of dietary fibers is growing due to the ability of dietary component to control the release and absorption of glucose. This presents an outstanding opportunity to improve the quality of food products by incorporating dietary fiber into starchy food products. The physicochemical properties of different fibers and their behavior in the gastrointestinal tract (GIT) differ. To test the efficacy of these different fibers on starch digestion, static in vitro digestion models under conditions that mimic the human GIT are frequently used. Indeed, many efforts have been committed to the development of various static in vitro protocols for starch digestion. Though not considered as the gold standard in digestibility studies in food science and technology, static simulated models provide a useful alternative to in vivo techniques for rapid screening of the digestibility of food products under conditions that simulate the human GIT. This review presents the current status and development of digestion techniques for simulating digestion conditions in the human GIT, with particular interest on starch digestion in the presence of dietary fiber in the three phases of digestions including the oral, gastric and the intestinal steps. This summary can benefit investigators in developing static in vitro digestion models designed to simulate starch digestion with relevant values of the quantifiable parameters, including pH, enzymes and simulated digestive fluids.

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Multiple effects of grape seed polyphenolics to prevent metabolic diseases
Torey ARVIK, Hyunsook KIM, James SEIBER, Wallace YOKOYAMA
Front. Agr. Sci. Eng. . 2018, 5 (3): 351-361.  https://doi.org/10.15302/J-FASE-2018235
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Obesity is increasing in developing countries. Population studies show a relationship between affluence and obesity. Changing food intake patterns with affluence such as preference for foods with less astringent polyphenolic compounds and dietary fibers may increase risk of metabolic dysfunctions due to caloric imbalance. Animal models of obesity consistently show that grape seed procyanidins prevent increases in body and abdo- minal adipose weight gain, plasma cholesterol, liver weight gain and inflammation in animals on high fat diets. The mechanisms are not clear because the oral intake of procyanidins results in pleiotropic interactions with proteins in the mouth, stomach, small intestine, cecum and colon that affect the rate of digestion of bioavailability of macronutrients, sterols, and dietary fiber. Procyanidins also bind bile acids and reduce intestinal permeability to inflammatory bacterial cell wall fragment. Procyanidins are not degraded or metabolized until reaching the lower gut where they can be metabolized into phenolic acids by gut bacteria. While they are metabolized by gut bacteria, they also alter total numbers and distribution of phyla and species of gut bacteria. Gut bacteria are recognized as significant contributors to obesity and obesity related metabolic diseases. The review examines the different pleiotropic effects of grape seed procyanidins that have a significant effect on metabolic disease in animal models of obesity.

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RESEARCH ARTICLE
Proteome comparisons reveal influence of different dietary proteins on the development of rat jejunum
Mengjie LI, Chunbao LI, Shangxin SONG, Xinglian XU, Guanghong ZHOU
Front. Agr. Sci. Eng. . 2018, 5 (3): 362-372.  https://doi.org/10.15302/J-FASE-2018206
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This study compared proteome profiles and morphological changes of rat jejunum in response to different dietary proteins. Fifty male Sprague-Dawley rats were fed with casein (control), and isolated beef, pork, fish and chicken proteins for 14 days. Proteome analysis, histological observation and PEPT1 quantification of the jejunum were performed. The results indicated that rats fed with chicken proteins had higher PEPT1 mRNA and protein levels (P<0.05) but lower villus height and ratio of villus height to crypt depth (V/C ratio, P<0.05) than those fed with casein and pork protein. Label-free LC-MS/MS indicated that, as compared to casein, intake of chicken protein can regulate oligopeptide transport mainly by upregulating PEPT1 protein expression and reducing dipeptidyl-peptidase activity related to biological oxidation, and can reduce oligopeptide absorption capacity by regulating Hippo signaling pathway. Although intake of beef and fish proteins had no significant effect on PEPT1 expression, they altered several signaling pathways.

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Aspergillus oryzae reduces IgE binding ability of allergenic egg white proteins
Sen LI, Marina OFFENGENDEN, Michael G. GÄNZLE, Jianping WU
Front. Agr. Sci. Eng. . 2018, 5 (3): 373-381.  https://doi.org/10.15302/J-FASE-2018210
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Egg white proteins are one of the major allergens. The objective of this study was to investigate the effect of Aspergillus oryzae cultivation on IgE binding ability of egg white proteins. Effect of A. oryzae on egg white proteins was determined using ninhydrin method, SDS-PAGE, ELISA, fluorescence FITC labeling, MALDI-TOF-MS and LC-MS/MS analysis. Adding mycelium of A. oryzae ATCC 1011 and 16868 substantially reduced the IgE binding ability of acidified egg white after 24 h incubation. The binding capacity of egg white proteins to IgE in plasma from four egg allergy patients was almost completely lost after incubation with mycelium of ATCC 16868. Results from SDS-PAGE, free amino acid analysis, MALDI-TOF-MS and LC-MS/MS indicated that there was no substantial protein degradation during incubation. Therefore, the reduction of IgE binding ability of egg white proteins during A. oryzae treatment was probably due to a loss of ~1700 Da mass including a fragment of the ovomucoid N terminus.

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Construction of a universal recombinant expression vector that regulates the expression of human lysozyme in milk
Shen LIU, Shengzhe SHANG, Xuezhen YANG, Huihua ZHANG, Dan LU, Ning LI
Front. Agr. Sci. Eng. . 2018, 5 (3): 382-389.  https://doi.org/10.15302/J-FASE-2018211
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The mammary gland provides a novel method for producing recombinant proteins in milk of transgenic animals. A key component in the technology is the construction of an efficient milk expression vector. Here, we established a simple method to construct a milk expression vector, by a combination of homologous recombination and digestion-ligation. Our methodology is expected to have the advantages of both plasmid and bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC) vectors. The BAC of mouse whey acidic protein gene (mWAP) was modified twice by homologous recombination to produce a universal expression vector, and the human lysozyme gene (hLZ) was then inserted into the vector by a digestion-ligation method. The final vector containing the 8.5 kb mWAP 5′ promoter, 4.8 kb hLZ genomic DNA, and 8.0 kb mWAP 3′ genomic DNA was microinjected into pronuclei of fertilized mouse embryos, to successfully generate two transgenic mouse lines that expressed recombinant human lysozyme (rhLZ) in milk. The highest expression level of rhLZ was 0.45 g·L1, and rhLZ exhibited the same antibacterial activity as native hLZ. Our results have provided a simple approach to construct a universal milk expression vector, and demonstrated that the resulting vector regulates the expression of hLZ in milk.

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