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Poult Sci. 2013 Feb;92(2):346-51. doi: 10.3382/ps.2012-02652.

Occurrence of vancomycin-resistant enterococci in turkey flocks.

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Chemisches und Veterinäruntersuchungsamt Stuttgart, Chemical and Veterinary Investigation Office Stuttgart, Schaflandstr. 3/3, 70736 Fellbach, Germany.


In the present study, the prevalence of vancomycin-resistant enterococci (VRE) in turkeys in the southwest of Germany was investigated. For this purpose, 200 cloacal swab samples and 5 environmental dust samples (tested as a pooled sample) of each of the 20 flocks (10 female and 10 male flocks) included in this study were examined. The VRE could be isolated by means of a procedure combining bacterial cultivation in an enrichment broth and on a selective solid media. Enterococci were identified biochemically and subsequently tested on the presence of the vancomycin resistance genes vanA, vanB (B1/B2/B3), and vanC (C1/C2/C3) using real-time PCR assays. In 54 (27%) turkeys originating from 11 (55%) flocks and in 14 (70%) of the dust samples, exclusively vanA and vanC1 genes could be detected. Of the turkeys examined, 46 were colonized with VRE bearing the resistance gene vanC1 and 8 vanA, originating from 9 and 2 flocks, respectively. None of the birds carried vanB, vanC2, or vanC3 positive VRE. The results obtained from the birds are largely confirmed by the dust samples originating from 4 vanA and 10 vanC1 positive flocks. However, one flock housing animals colonized with vanC1 positive VRE could not be confirmed by the dust samples that revealed vanA bearing VRE. However, in one case vanA and in 3 cases vanC1 carrying VRE could be detected in dust samples of the turkey houses, but not in the turkeys of the associated flock. In 5 flocks the turkeys as well as the dust samples were free of VRE.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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