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Appl Environ Microbiol. 2007 Jan;73(1):148-55. Epub 2006 Nov 3.

Longitudinal study of Finnish Campylobacter jejuni and C. coli isolates from humans, using multilocus sequence typing, including comparison with epidemiological data and isolates from poultry and cattle.

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  • 1Department of Food and Environmental Hygiene, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, P.O. Box 66, FI-00014 University of Helsinki, Finland. rauni.karenlampi@helsinki.fi

Abstract

We describe a study on the application of multilocus sequence typing for the analysis of Campylobacter jejuni and C. coli isolates from human domestically acquired infections in the Helsinki-Uusimaa area of Finland in 1996, 2002, and 2003. In addition, isolates from poultry meat and fecal samples of cattle from the seasonal peak (July to September) in 2003 were included in the study. In total, 361 Finnish C. jejuni and C. coli strains were typed. Sequence type 45 (ST-45) (45%), ST-21 (21%), and ST-677 (11%) clonal complexes were the most prevalent. The ST-45 and ST-677 complexes were overrepresented in comparison with previous studies. The longitudinal study revealed an association between C. coli (ST-828 complex) infection and elderly patients (>/=60 years). Analysis of exposure factors, determined by a previous case-control study conducted during the seasonal peak in 2002, revealed that the ST-48 complex was significantly (P < 0.05) associated with the tasting or eating of raw minced meat. New and unassigned STs were associated with swimming in natural bodies of water, whereas the ST-677 complex was related to drinking nonchlorinated water from a small water plant or water from natural sources. The ST-45 complex was associated with contact with pet cats and dogs. In 2003, ST-45 occurrence was significantly associated with poultry whereas ST-50 was associated with isolates from humans. In contrast, ST-53, ST-58, ST-61, and ST-883 were significantly associated with isolates from cattle. Further studies are needed to reveal the significance of the observed associations.

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