Compiled by Steve Smith

Daring dairy development

CHELSEA, Mass. - An aseptic processing system for low-acid dairy beverages, developed by Shibuya International ( for HP Hood LLC (, has earned a filing acceptance by the Food and Drug Administration ( as the first aseptic-based rotary bottle filler in the U.S. The technology provides a package that locks out air, seals in nutrients and flavor, and allows the dairy beverage to remain unrefrigerated for up to six months. The system’s sterile processing and packaging environment allows products to be shelf-stable without the use of preservatives. The rotary bottle filler is accurate to less than one-half gram, and is approved for use with HDPE (high-density polyethylene) bottles. The aseptic dairy processing and packaging machines at Hood’s Winchester, Va., plant were manufactured by Shibuya, and are the first and only high-speed rotary low-acid aseptic dairy application in the country to file with the FDA.

Amazing angstrom adjustments

STATE COLLEGE, Pa. - Going beyond submicron nanoscale levels, researchers at Penn State University ( are working with organic monolayers with 5-angstrom features, which they say hold promise for enabling self-assembly of wafer patterns too small for lithography by serving as templates for chip atoms. The self-assembled monolayers, or SAMs, are being explored as a way to create intricate, angstrom-scale patterns-which serve as placeholders-that can be tuned by adjusting their resulting physical properties. As a result, researchers believe SAMs can potentially be arrayed across wafers. A group led by Professor Paul Weiss is developing a catalog of chemical formulas that can create a variety of self-assembled monolayers to serve as patterns for single-molecule semiconductor devices.

Agency axes antimicrobial

ROCKVILLE, Md. - Effective this month, the Food and Drug Administration ( will no longer allow the use of the antimicrobial drug enrofloxacin for treating bacterial infections in poultry. The agency says scientific data shows that the drug’s use causes resistance to the bacterium Campylobacter, known as a significant cause of foodborne illness. Chickens and turkeys normally harbor Campylobacter in their digestive tracts without causing them to become ill, yet it’s been discovered that the bacterium is resistant to enrofloxacin when it is used to treat bacterial infections in poultry. The FDA’s Center for Veterinary Medicine says the resistant bacteria multiply in the digestive tract, and persist and spread through transportation and slaughter. Enrofloxacin belongs to a class of drugs known as fluoroquinolones, marketed by Bayer Corp. under the name Baytril.

Prion primer produced

DUBLIN, Ireland - Research and Markets ( has released a report, Prions: A Primer for the Biopharmaceutical Industry, that highlights the importance of risk management for ensuring manufacturing process safety. The report offers insight into the challenges encountered during the manufacture of plasma-derived products or ruminant-sourced raw materials used in biopharmaceutical manufacturing. The report includes the nature of prions based upon currently available knowledge, and issues that must be addressed in the manufacturing process to ensure safe products that comply with regulations.