Deoxynivalenol Decontamination in Raw and Germinating Barley Treated by Plasma-Activated Water and Intense Pulsed Light

Dongjie Chen, Paul L Chen, Yanling Cheng, Peng Peng, Juer Liu, Yiwei Ma, Yuhuan Liu, R. R Ruan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


The contamination of barley kernel by Fusarium fungi constitutes a serious problem for malting-related industries. Deoxynivalenol (DON) is a secondary metabolite produced by Fusarium fungi. DON can affect dopaminergic receptors in the human brain; it may cause symptoms such as vomiting, diarrhea, headache, and fever. The aims of this study were to evaluate the DON destruction effect of the intense pulsed light (IPL) and plasma-activated water (PAW) treatments in raw and germinating barley and assess the feasibility for disinfection in the malt industry. Both non-thermal methods degraded DON concentration in germinating barley. IPL treatment significantly reduced (p < 0.05) the DON level of germinating barley samples by 35.5% after 180 pulses in 60 s, and the PAW treatment effectively degraded the DON level by 34.6% in germinating barley in the first 5 min. However, higher barley quality remained for PAW treatment (germination rate: 81–100%) than for the IPL treatment (germination rate: 41–60%). For the raw barley samples, although significant reduction (30.9%) was achieved after 180 pulses of IPL treatment, noticeable quality (germination rate: 20–40%) alteration was observed. Significantly less DON degradation was achieved by the PAW treatment on raw barley than the germinating barley for all times. Overall, these findings suggested that PAW and IPL might potentially be used to reduce DON levels in some malt-related industry applications, and PAW was recommended as a better method than IPL to maintain the barley quality.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)246-254
Number of pages9
JournalFood and Bioprocess Technology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 1 2019


  • Barley kernel
  • Deoxynivalenol degradation
  • Intense pulsed light
  • Non-thermal treatment
  • Plasma-activated water

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