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Avian Dis. 2001 Oct-Dec;45(4):1044-9.

Dynamics of Salmonella contamination in a commercial quail operation.

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Department of Avian Medicine, The University of Georgia, Athens 30602, USA.


Control of carcass contamination requires knowledge of the source and dynamics of spread of Salmonella in commercial poultry production. We examined Salmonella contamination at a U.S. commercial quail operation. Pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) was used to type isolates in order to trace Salmonella throughout this production environment. During a 6-mo survey, Salmonella serotypes hadar, typhimurium, typhimurium variant Copenhagen, and paratyphi were encountered within this poultry operation. Ninety-four percent of the Salmonella isolated from breeder and production houses and from carcass rinses belonged to Salmonella serotypes typhimurium variant Copenhagen and hadar. There were six distinct S. typhimurium variant Copenhagen genetic types, as identified by PFGE, present within this particular poultry operation. Seventy-nine percent of S. typhimurium variant Copenhagen identified from the environment of the breeder and production houses produced the same PFGE pattern. Thirty-eight percent of S. typhimurium Copenhagen isolated from carcass rinses and the breeder house shared the same PFGE DNA pattern. This study demonstrates the transmission of salmonellae throughout this production environment, from the breeders to their progeny and to the birds ultimately processed for human consumption.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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