Submitted to: Poultry Science Association
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: March 31, 2009
Publication Date: July 20, 2009
Citation: Cox Jr, N.A., Richardson, L.J., Buhr, R.J., Cray, P.J. 2009. Campylobacter jejuni, C. coli, and C. lari naturally present in Leghorn laying hens and the antibiotic resistance profiles of these organisms. Poultry Science Association. 88(S1):430P. P.131-132. Technical Abstract: Campylobacter spp. are present in the intestinal tract and internal tissues of broiler breeder and broiler chickens. Campylobacter spp. are known to cause acute bacterial gastroenteritis in humans and raw poultry products have been implicated as a significant source of these infections. The objectives were to determine 1) Campylobacter spp. presence in the reproductive tract, lymphoid organs, liver/gallbladder and ceca of commercial Leghorn laying hens, 2) species of Campylobacter present, and 3) antimicrobial resistance pattern of Campylobacter isolates. In study 1, three flocks ranging from 94-105 wk-of-age were sampled from a commercial laying complex. In study 2, two flocks, 82 and 84 wk-of-age were sampled from a separate complex. Hens (n=30/flock) were euthanized, de-feathered, aseptically necropsied, and the ovarian follicles, spleen, liver/gallbladder, upper (infundibulum, magnum, and isthmus) and lower (shell gland and vagina) reproductive tracts were aseptically removed prior to the ceca. Samples were packed on ice and transported to the laboratory for evaluation. For speciation, a standard BAX® PCR method was used while susceptibility testing was performed using NCCLSI standards and recommended quality control organisms. Isolates were examined for susceptibility using a semi-automated testing system (Sensititre™) to the following nine antimicrobials: azithromycin, clindamycin, ciprofloxacin, erythromycin, florfenicol, gentamicin, nalidixic acid, telithromycin, and tetracycline. In study 1, the isolation rate was 13, 67, 53, 3, 13, and 57% from the ovarian follicles, lower reproductive tract, upper reproductive tract, spleen, liver/gallbladder, and ceca, respectively. In study 2, the isolation rate was 17, 43, 33, 20, 17, and 73% from the ovarian follicles, lower reproductive tract, upper reproductive tract, spleen, liver/gallbladder, and ceca, respectively. Overall, 53% of isolates were C. coli, 46% C. jejuni, and 1% C. lari. In study 1, all of the isolates were pan susceptible. In study 2, 37% of the isolates were resistant to tetracycline. Commercial table egg laying hens housed in colony cages on wire floors have diverse Campylobacter spp. within different tissues and do not display resistance to a broad range of antimicrobials.