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Appl Environ Microbiol. 2010 Aug;76(15):5025-31. doi: 10.1128/AEM.00628-10. Epub 2010 Jun 18.

Influence of temperature and predation on survival of Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium and expression of invA in soil and manure-amended soil.

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Geological Survey of Denmark and Greenland (GEUS), DK-1350 Copenhagen, Denmark.


The effects of three temperatures (5, 15, and 25 degrees C) on the survival of Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium in topsoil were investigated in small microcosms by three different techniques: plate counting, invA gene quantification, and invA mRNA quantification. Differences in survival were related to the effect of protozoan predation. Tetracycline-resistant Salmonella serovar Typhimurium was inoculated into soil and manure-amended soil at 1.5 x 10(8) cells g soil(-1). Population densities were determined by plate counting and by molecular methods and monitored for 42 days. Simultaneous extraction of RNA and DNA, followed by quantitative PCR, was used to investigate invA gene levels and expression. Analysis by these three techniques showed that Salmonella serovar Typhimurium survived better at 5 degrees C. Comparing DNA and CFU levels, significantly higher values were determined by DNA-based techniques. invA mRNA levels showed a fast decrease in activity, with no detectable mRNA after an incubation period of less than 4 days in any of the soil scenarios. A negative correlation was found between Salmonella serovar Typhimurium CFU levels and protozoan most probable numbers, and we propose the role of the predator-prey interaction as a factor to explain the die-off of the introduced strain by both culture- and DNA quantification-based methods. The results indicate that temperature, manure, and protozoan predation are important factors influencing the survival of Salmonella serovar Typhimurium in soil.

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