Sucrose solutions irradiated in the presence or absence of oxygen inhibit the growth of Salmonella typhimurium. The addition of catalase prior to or shortly after inoculation of the organisms into the growth medium containing irradiated sucrose eliminates most of the inhibitory action produced by irradiated oxygen-free sucrose solutions and only partly eliminates inhibition manifested by irradiated oxygenated sucrose solutions. The effectiveness of catalase decreases when the time elapsed between inoculation and addition of catalase is increased, but is time-independent when catalase is added before inoculation. The inhibitory action of irradiated sucrose is attributed to hydroxyalkyl peroxides, R(OH)-OO-H and R(OH)-OO-(OH)R, formed from the interaction of radiolytic H2 O2 with carbonyl compounds resulting from carbohydrate radiolysis. From mass action and other considerations it is concluded that the hydroperoxides predominate in irradiated oxygen-free sucrose, while the dialkyl peroxides predominate in irradiated oxygenated sucrose solutions.

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