Submitted to: Research Workers in Animal Diseases Conference Proceedings
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 10/2/1997
Publication Date: N/A
Technical Abstract: Swine have been implicated as the principal reservoir for human pathogenic Y. enterocolitica, with the incidence in swine tissues, especially tonsils, reported to be as high as 96%. The purpose of this study was to develop and evaluate a PCR-based ELISA to detect Y. enterocolitica in pigs. The ail gene is a chromosomally-encoded virulence factor unique to Y. enterocolitica and was used as the target in the PCR ELISA assay. The PCR ELISA amplified only Y. enterocolitica and not other Yersinia or enteric bacterial reference strains. The assay was used to screen pigs obtained from three premises in Iowa. Swine fecal samples and tonsils were enriched and plated to selective agar supplemented with cefsulodin, irgasan, and novobiovin (CIN). Typical "bull's eye" colonies were picked and verified as Y. enterocolitica with PCR ELISA. Y. enterocolitica was detected in 83% of tonsil samples and in 43% of fecal samples obtained from farm I (n=30 pigs). It was not detected in fecal or tonsillar samples from farm II (n=58 pigs) or from swine raised in confinement at NADC (n=19 pigs). This study demonstrates the utility of the PCR ELISA in confirming pathogenic Y. enterocolitica in livestock.