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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Changes in Cecal Environment and Campylobacter Populations Assocaited with Feed Withdrawal and Antibiotic Treatment in Swine

item Harvey, Roger
item Young, Colin
item Swindle, M - MED UNIV OF S. CAROLINA
item Anderson, Robin
item Genovese, Kenneth
item Stanker, Larry
item Nisbet, David

Submitted to: Proceedings of Allen D Leman Swine Conference
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: August 1, 1999
Publication Date: N/A

Technical Abstract: It has been hypothesized that the stresses of transportation, lairage, and feed withdrawal associated with slaughter may change enteric bacterial populations and increase enteropathogen shedding in swine. There is an increased interest from a food safety standpoint in the prevalence of Campylobacter in swine. The objective of the present study was to evaluate how feed withdrawal, transportation, and antibiotic treatments influenced the cecal environment and cecal populations of Campylobacter in swine. Four miniature gilts (15 kg), naturally infected with C. jejuni, were surgically implanted with cecal cannulas and were maintained on a corn/soybean meal/whey diet (22% protein). The pigs were fasted for 48 hrs. Samples of cecal content were collected for 7 days prior to and for 7 days after the fast, and mean values were determined for pH, VFA, and C. jejuni enumeration. Following a 48 hr. fast, cecal pH increased by one unit; acetic, propionic, and butyric acids decreased by 61%, 71%, and 19%, respectively; and there was a two-fold log10 increase in cfu/g cecal content of C. jejuni. Within 7 days of full feed, values had returned to pre-fast levels. The study was replicated 3 times. Pigs (full-fed) were loaded onto a trailer and transported for 3 hr., and cecal samples collected prior to and immediately following transportation. Values of pH, VFA, and cfu of C. jejuni did not change following transportation. Treatment with an oral suspension of erythromycin (1600 mg/pig/day) eliminated C. jejuni from the cecum and from ileocolic lymph nodes. These data are important for food safety considerations because feed withdrawal, commonly associated with shipping and slaughter, can increase shedding of C. jejuni in swine.

Last Modified: 4/18/2015
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