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Saudi J Biol Sci. 2018 May;25(4):783-785. doi: 10.1016/j.sjbs.2016.07.002. Epub 2016 Aug 4.

Prevalence of Clostridium difficile in raw cow, sheep, and goat meat in Jazan, Saudi Arabia.

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Jazan University, Jazan, Saudi Arabia.


Background:Clostridium difficile has been shown to be a nosocomial infection associated with diarrhoea and pseudomembranous colitis in hospitalized patients especially old patients. In my previous studies, it was shown the occurrence of C. difficile in animals feces and vegetables which may act as a source of infection to humans. The aim of the study was to determine the prevalence of C. difficile in retail raw cow, sheep, and goat, meat in Jazan, Saudi Arabia. Method: A total of 600 raw meat samples from cow, sheep, and goat were collected during June-December 2015, and tested for the presence of C. difficile. The method used to check for the presence of C. difficile was by choosing selective enrichment media in C. difficile broth, followed by alcohol shock-treatment and plating onto C. difficile selective medium. C. difficile isolates were typed using PCR ribotyping and also analyzed for antibiotic susceptibility. Results: It was shown that, 9 of 600 meat samples (1.5%) were contaminated with C. difficile. The prevalence of C. difficile was as follow: 7 out of 600 (1.17%) were found in cow, 2 out of 600 (0.3%) were found in sheep, while was no C. difficile was isolated from goat. Eleven out of 18 C. difficile isolates were positive for tcdA, tcdB and cdtB toxin genes and were classified as ribotype 078. Three strains were positive tcdA, and tcdB, and two strains possessed only tcdB. C. difficile strains showed high resistance to ampicillin, gentamycin, erythromycin and nalidixic acid. Conclusions: The present work shows the potential risk of raw meet in transmitting C. difficile to humans.


Clostridium difficile; Cow; Raw meat; Sheep

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