Send to

Choose Destination
J Dairy Sci. 2011 Mar;94(3):1155-64. doi: 10.3168/jds.2010-3599.

Effect of heat treatments on stability of β-lactams in milk.

Author information

Instituto de Ciencia y Tecnología Animal, Universidad Politécnica de Valencia, Camino de Vera 14, Apartado 46022 Valencia, Spain.


The presence of residues of antimicrobial substances in milk may have serious toxicological and technical consequences. To date, few studies have been done to evaluate the effect of heat treatments on β-lactam residues in milk. However, the few studies that have been conducted estimate losses of antimicrobial activity under different combinations of temperature and time using microbiological methods. The aims of this study were to calculate the kinetic parameters for the degradation of β-lactam antibiotics in milk and to develop prediction models to estimate the concentration losses of these compounds in conventional dairy heat treatments. To do so, we employed a quantitative HPLC method to calculate losses in concentrations of 10 β-lactam antibiotics in milk with different combinations of temperature and time. Increasing the temperature from 60°C to 100°C decreased the half-life of amoxicillin (372 to 50 min), ampicillin (741 to 26 min), cloxacillin (367 to 46 min), and penicillin G (382 to 43 min). These increases in temperature caused further degradation in cephalosporins, which was accompanied by a decrease in half-life times to reach very low values; for instance, 4, 5, and 6 min for cefoperazone, cephurexime, and cephapirin, respectively. Kinetic equations were applied to different heat treatments used in dairy processing. Heat treatments at high temperatures and long times (e.g., 120°C for 20 min) led to a further degradation of β-lactam antibiotics with percentages close to 100% for cefoperazone and cefuroxime. In contrast, when milk was subjected to heat treatments at lower temperatures and times (e.g., 72°C for 15s), the degradation of β-lactam in milk did not exceed 1% for the 10 antibiotics tested.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free full text

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Elsevier Science
Loading ...
Support Center