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Vector Borne Zoonotic Dis. 2012 Jan;12(1):10-6. doi: 10.1089/vbz.2011.0667. Epub 2011 Sep 15.

Phenotypic and genotypic characterization of Salmonella enterica recovered from poultry meat in Tunisia and identification of new genetic traits.

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Institute of Veterinary Research of Tunisia, Tunis, Tunisia.


Thirty-seven Salmonella enterica isolates obtained from poultry meat in Tunisia were included in this study for characterization of antibiotic resistance mechanisms. High percentages of resistance were detected to ampicillin, sulfonamides, tetracycline, nalidixic acid, and streptomycin (32.4%-89.2%), and lower percentages to amoxicillin-clavulanic acid, kanamycin, amikacin, trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazol, and chloramphenicol (2.7%-18.9%). All strains showed susceptibility to ceftazidime, cefotaxime, gentamicin, and ciprofloxacin. Class 1 integrons were detected in 30% of Salmonella isolates, and four different gene cassette arrangements were detected, including genes implicated in resistance to aminoglycosides (aadA1 and aadA2) and trimethoprim (dfrA1). Four different Pc variants (PcW, PcH1, PcH1(TTN-10), PcW(TGN-10)) with inactive P2 have been found among these isolates. Integron-positive isolates were ascribed to eight different serotypes. A Salmonella Schwarzengrund isolate harbored a new class 1 integron containing the qacH-dfrA1b-aadA1b-catB2 gene cassette arrangement, with the very unusual PcH1(TTN-10) promoter, which has been registered in GenBank (accession no. HQ874651). Different plasmid replicon types were demonstrated among integron-positive isolates: IncI1 (8 isolates), IncN (8), IncP (2), IncFIB (2), and IncFII (2). Ten different pulsed-field gel electrophoresis profiles were detected among the 11 integron-positive isolates and 8 different sequence types were identified by multilocus sequence typing, one of them (registered as ST867) was new, detected in 3 Salmonella Zanzibar isolates. A high diversity of clones is observed among poultry Salmonella isolates and a high proportion of them show a multiresistant phenotype with very diverse mobile genetic structures that could be implicated in bacterial dissemination in different environments.

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