The effect of high hydrostatic pressure application on fetal bovine serum components and the model microorganism (Bovine Viral Diarrheavirus type 1 NADL strain) was studied at 132 and 220 MPa pressure for 5 min at 25 degrees C. Protein secondary structures were found to be unaffected by an artificial neural network application on the amide I region for both untreated and HHP treated samples. FTIR spectroscopy study of both the HHP-treated and control samples revealed changes in the intensity of some bands in the finger-print region (1500-900 cm(-1)) originating mainly from lipids which are thought to result from changes in the lipoprotein structure. The virus strain lost its infectivity completely after 220 MPa HHP treatments. These results indicate that HHP can be successfully used for inactivation of pestiviruses while leaving structural and functional properties of serum and serum products unaffected. (C) 2011 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.