Gary M. Smith

 Gary M. Smith

Position

  • Professor, Chemist and Director of the UC Davis Nuclear Magnetic Resonance Facility
  • Food Science and Technology

Contact

Degree

Ph. D. University of California at San Diego, 1976

Research

Dr. Smith researches the mechanism of adaptation of microorganisms including Listeria monocytogenes, a notable psychrotrophic food-borne pathogen, to osmotic stress and to growth at low temperature. He is discovering that part of the process of adaptation to both osmotic and chill stress involves the accumulation of the "compatible solutes" glycine betaine and carnitine from the medium (i.e., the food which they contaminate, such as meat and dairy products). His current research identifies three transport systems for these solutes and is now investigating the mechanism of action of the principal glycine betaine transporter, Gbu, and the mechanism of its activation by environmental stress. The laboratory is also investigating the structure and mechanism of activation of the enzyme polyphenol oxidase.

Selected Publications

  • Belloque, J., R. López-Fandiño and G.M. Smith. 2000. A 1H-NMR study of the effect of high pressure on beta‑lactoglobulin. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry 48(9):3906-3912.
  • Angelidis, A.S., L.T. Smith, L.M. Hoffman and G.M. Smith. 2002. Identification of OpuC as a chill-activated and osmotically activated carnitine transporter in Listeria monocytogenes. Applied and Environmental Microbiology 68(6):2644-2650. Applied and Environmental Microbiology 68(6):2644-2650.
  • Angelidis, A.S., L.T. Smith and G.M. Smith. 2002. Elevated carnitine accumulation by Listeria monocytogenes impaired in glycine betaine transport is insufficient to restore wild-type cryotolerance in milk whey. International Journal of Food Microbiology 75(1-2):1-9.
  • Angelidis, A.S. and G.M. Smith. 2003. Role of the glycine betaine and carnitine transporters in adaptation of Listeria monocytogenes in defined medium to chill stress. Applied and Environmental Microbiology 69(12):1-7.
  • Angelidis, A.S. and G.M. Smith. 2003. Three transporters mediate uptake of glycine betaine and carnitine by Listeria monocytogenes in response to hyperosmotic stress. Applied and Environmental Microbiology 69(2):1013-1022.

Extension of Knowledge Activities 

  • FST 123 - Introduction to Enzymology
  • FST 123L - Enzymology Laboratory
  • FST 10, Food Science, Folklore and Health