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Comparative Study
. 2009 Dec;6(10):1161-70.
doi: 10.1089/fpd.2009.0327.

Campylobacter Excreted Into the Environment by Animal Sources: Prevalence, Concentration Shed, and Host Association

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Free PMC article
Comparative Study

Campylobacter Excreted Into the Environment by Animal Sources: Prevalence, Concentration Shed, and Host Association

Iain D Ogden et al. Foodborne Pathog Dis. .
Free PMC article

Abstract

An intensive study of 443 isolates of Campylobacter jejuni and Campylobacter coli from 2031 fecal samples excreted by animal sources including cattle, sheep, and pigs, a range of wild and domesticated avian species and pets is described. The prevalence found in the majority of animal sources ranged from 22% to 28% with poultry being highest at 41% and cats and dogs lowest (<5%). The average count excreted for each animal source was found not to be significantly different ranging from approximately 10(2) to 10(5) cfu/g. Multilocus sequence typing (MLST) identified phylogenies that exhibited host specificity. A number of clonal complexes (CCs) and sequence types (STs) were characteristic of particular hosts (e.g., CC-179, ST-637, and ST-1341 found only in pigeons and gulls). Analysis of genetic distance demonstrated numerous significant differences in the distribution of MLST types (CC, ST, and allele) between animal sources. Host association was quantified using structure that correctly assigned the nine animal sources with accuracies of 28%, 24%, and 55% at the CC, ST, and allele levels, respectively. This is substantially higher than would be expected by random allocation (11%) but farmyard poultry had the lowest assignment accuracy (13%, 13%, and 21%) suggesting that isolates were shared with a wide range of other animals. This study demonstrates the link between MLST type and host and provides data that can be used in risk assessment and food attribution models. Further, it demonstrates the applicability of MLST to characterize Campylobacter strains from a broad range of environmental sources.

Figures

FIG. 1
FIG. 1
(A) Trees generated by clonalframe of the 442 Campylobacter jejuni (black) and Campylobacter coli (gray) haplotypes (concatenated multilocus sequence typing alleles). (B) Magnified C. coli tree showing distribution of host STs (avian excluding poultry, black circle; cattle, black triangle; pigs, black square; sheep, black diamond; poultry, gray circle; poultry + gull, gray triangle; poultry + sheep + cattle + gull, gray square; poultry + sheep, gray diamond). (C) Magnified C. jejuni tree outer ring showing all avian isolates but not poultry, inner ring showing remainder of isolates (colors as in (B) but cattle + sheep + poultry combined, white triangle; cattle + sheep combined, white square; sheep + poultry, white diamond; and pets, black inverted triangle). ST, sequence type.
FIG. 2
FIG. 2
Rarefaction curves showing diversity by clonal complex (A) and ST (B) for animal sources with 10 or more multilocus sequence typing–typed Campylobacter isolates.
FIG. 3
FIG. 3
Common Campylobacter clonal complex (A) and ST (B) types (% of total dataset), each animal source is normalized by its representative number of isolates and the sum of all the grid elements in each figure totals 100% (birds are avian samples of unknown host species).

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