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Pearson, A D; Greenwood, M H; Feltham, R K; Healing, T D; Donaldson, J; Jones, D M; Colwell, R R (1996)
Languages: English
Types: Article
Subjects: Research Article

Classified by OpenAIRE into

mesheuropmc: animal structures, animal diseases
A study of Campylobacter jejuni on a broiler chicken farm between 1989 and 1994 gave an estimated isolation rate of 27% (3,304 of 12,233) from a 0.9% sample of 1.44 million broiler chickens from six to eight sheds over 32 consecutive rearing flocks comprising 251 broiler shed flocks. During the study, C. jejuni was found in 35.5% of the 251 shed flocks but only 9.2% (23 of 251) had Campylobacter isolates in successive flocks, with 9 of those 23 sheds having the same serotype between consecutive flocks, indicating a low level of transmission between flocks. Analysis of a systematic sample of 484 of 3,304 (14.6%) C. jejuni isolates showed that 85% were of 10 serotype complexes but 58% were of 3 serotype complexes, indicating a high degree of strain similarity throughout the entire study. The three commonest types were detected in 8 of 32 flocks during the 5-year study period, suggesting an intermittent common external Campylobacter source. This hypothesis was tested by a retrospective cohort analysis of C. jejuni rates and types by reference to hatchery supplier of the 1-day-old chicks. Isolation rates of C. jejuni and frequency distribution of types were determined in 6-week-old broiler chickens identified by the hatchery supplying the original chicks. The isolation rate of C. jejuni in broilers, supplied by hatchery A, was 17.6%, compared to 42.9% (P < 0.0001) for broilers reared from chicks supplied by hatchery B. In two instances, when both hatcheries were used to stock the same farm flock, Campylobacter isolates were found only in those sheds with chicks supplied by hatchery B. Thus, the frequency distribution of Campylobacter types for chickens supplied by the two hatcheries over the 5-year period showed marked dissimilarity. These findings suggest that the isolation rate and type of Campylobacter isolates in broiler chickens was associated with the hatchery supplying chicks. The lack of diversity of types and the intermittent high positivity of sheds is evidence for a common source of C. jejuni introduced by vertical transmission rather than contamination at the hatchery or during transportation.
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