Title page for ETD etd-05152007-121919

Type of Document Master's Thesis
Author Sarnoski, Paul J.
URN etd-05152007-121919
Title Instrumental Methods for Determining Quality of Blue Crab (Callinectes sapidus) Meat
Degree Master of Science In the Life Sciences
Department Food Science and Technology
Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title
Jahncke, Michael L. Committee Co-Chair
O'Keefe, Sean F. Committee Co-Chair
Flick, George J. Jr. Committee Member
Mallikarjunan, Parameswarakumar Committee Member
  • gas chromatography-mass spectrometry
  • electronic nose
  • blue crab meat aroma
  • spoilage
  • indole
  • ammonia
Date of Defense 2007-05-03
Availability unrestricted
The purpose of this study was to find an alternative instrumental method to sensory analysis and to further investigate the aroma properties of spoiling blue crab meat. This was accomplished by use of a Cyranose 320™ Electronic Nose, Draeger-Tubes®, and solid-phase microextraction gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (SPME-GC-MS). These techniques were compared to the more established techniques for determining quality of blue crab meat of sensory and microbiological analysis. Three different electronic nose methods were used to evaluate five sequentially spoiled groups of crab meat. The manufacturer’s recommended setup only resulted in a 30 % correct separation of the known groups, and only 10 % of the samples were correctly identified when coded unknown samples were used to validate the electronic nose training results. The compressed air method which utilized compressed tank breathing air, filtered through activated carbon and moisture traps resulted in 100 % separation of the known groups, but only correctly identified 20 % of the coded unknown samples. Draeger-Tubes® were found to be more accurate and precise compared with the electronic nose. All 5 groups of samples analyzed using Draeger-Tubes® were found to be significantly different at α = 0.05 using a Tukey-Kramer ANOVA statistical procedure. The coded unknown samples were correctly identified at a rate of 83 %. The simplicity and rapidness of this procedure allows it to possibly be an alternative for the crab industry as an alternative to sensory analysis.

SPME-GC-MS found trimethylamine (TMA), ammonia, and indole to best correlate with spoilage of blue crab meat. TMA was found to be sensitive to the minor changes in the early stages (0 - 4 days of refrigerated storage) of spoilage for blue crab meat. Indole corresponded well with sensory results, which suggests that indole may be a promising indicator for detecting early, mid, and highly spoiled samples. It is feasible that these methods can be applied to other crustaceans to determine spoilage level.

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