Hemorrhagic pneumonia in mink (Neovison vison) is caused by Pseudomonas aeruginosa and is an acute and fatal disease in farmed mink. Earlier work has demonstrated that some outbreaks of hemorrhagic pneumonia are caused by pathogenic strains while most outbreaks are caused by local strains. The objective of this study was to determine the genetic and geographical relationship among outbreaks of hemorrhagic pneumonia by pulsed-field gel electrophoresis typing of P. aeruginosa isolates. Furthermore, chosen isolates were typed by a commercial genotyping method based on single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) and compared to a larger dataset of human and environmental origin. The bacterial isolates were obtained from diagnostic samples from 2002 to 2009 and contained 164 isolates from 95 outbreaks on 90 farms. Our results show that most outbreaks of hemorrhagic pneumonia in mink are caused by distinct strains of P. aeruginosa. We also identified related P. aeruginosa strains which, together with two prevalent but unrelated clones, caused one third of the outbreaks of hemorrhagic pneumonia supporting the sparse literature on this subject. None of the SNP typed strains were identified in a large dataset of human and environmental origin.
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