Submitted to: Poultry Science
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 1/15/2001
Publication Date: 6/1/2001
Citation: Musgrove, M.T., Berrang, M.E., Byrd Ii, J.A., Stern, N.J., Cox Jr, N.A. 2001. Detection of campylobacter spp in ceca and crops with and without enrichment. Poultry Science. 80(6):825-828.
Interpretive Summary: Campylobacter is recognized as the most frequently reported foodborne human pathogen. The best methodology for different types of poultry samples has not been determined. This work was performed to evaluate whether direct sampling (agar plates) or amplifying numbers of the target bacteria (enrichment) would be more effective in recovering the organism from broiler crops and ceca. Crops and ceca were removed from partially processed (New York dressed) carcasses, and samples were directly plated and enriched using accepted methods. We found that Campylobacter could be recovered from crops equally well with direct plating or with enrichment. However, for cecal samples, Campylobacter was recovered more frequently with direct plating than with enrichment. This information will help researchers and quality control personnel use the most appropriate method when monitoring broiler flocks for Campylobacter colonization.
Technical Abstract: The purpose of this experiment was to determine how sampling method (direct plating or enrichment) affected the rate of Campylobacter spp. isolation from crop and cecal samples. In 4 separate trials, 32 New York dressed broiler carcasses were obtained from commercial plants (n = 128). Crops and ceca were removed aseptically, direct plated and enriched. Direct plating of samples was on Campy-Cefex plates which were incubated at 42 C for 36-48 h in micro-aerobic atmosphere (5 % O2, 10 % CO2, 85 % N2). Following direct plating, samples were enriched in Bolton broth at 37 C for 4 h and 42 C for 20 h in micro-aerobic atmosphere before plating onto Campy-Cefex plates. Campylobacter spp. was detected in 95.3 % of direct plated and 99.2 % of enriched crop samples. Campylobacter spp. was detected in 100 % of direct plated and 63.3 % of enriched cecal samples. All 128 crop and cecal samples were positive for the organism by one or both methods. Mean counts of Campylobacter spp. were 3.6 log10 cfu per g of crop sample and 6.8 log10 cfu per g of cecal sample. For these two sample types, both of which tend to be contaminated with large numbers of viable cells, direct plating is sufficient for isolation of Campylobacter. Direct plating also provides an estimate of contamination level. Enrichment of cecal samples resulted in a decreased rate of detection and does not allow estimation of numbers of Campylobacter.