Submitted to: Research Workers in Animal Diseases Conference Proceedings
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: September 21, 2001
Publication Date: N/A
Bordetella avium is the etiologic agent of coryza or rhinotracheitis in poultry, a highly contagious and costly problem for producers. Epidemiologic studies to identify reservoirs of infection and transmission patterns would permit more effective biosecurity measures and would be of assistance in the investigation of outbreaks. We have recently reported that restriction endonuclease analysis (REA) can distinguish among isolates. Preliminary evidence from that same study, based on a limited number of strains, suggested that ribotyping may also be useful for discrimination of strains. In the present study, ribotyping was used to evaluate 55 isolates of B. avium. Eight ribotypes were identified based on unique patterns of fragments ranging in size from approximately 2 to 15 Kb. Sixty-nine percent of the isolates were identified as ribotype 1 and 16% as ribotype 3. The remaining 6 ribotypes were each represented by only a few isolates, each comprising approximately 2-3.5% of the isolates evaluated. Four additional isolates, identified as "B. avium-like" by a USDA diagnostic laboratory, were also evaluated by ribotyping. Their patterns were identical to previously characterized ribotypes of Bordetella hinzii, a species sometimes isolated from diseased birds but not believed to be pathogenic. Furthermore, one of the 55 isolates originally identified as B. avium was found to have a B. hinzii ribotype pattern. These data indicate that ribotyping can be used to reliably distinguish B. avium from B. hinzii, which is difficult using traditional methods. The ability of ribotyping to discriminate among at least some isolates of B. avium provides a potential tool for epidemiologic investigations. A combination of ribotyping and REA will likely provide the highest discriminatory power.