Comparison of genotypes and serotypes of Campylobacter jejuni isolated from Danish wild mammals and birds and from broiler flocks and humans

L. Petersen, E.M. Nielsen, J. Engberg, Stephen L.W. On, H.H. Dietz

    Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


    The incidence of human infection with Campylobacter jejuni is increasing in most developed countries and the reason for this is largely unknown, Although poultry meat is considered to be a major source, it is evident that other reservoirs exist, possibly common to humans and poultry, Environmental sources are believed to be important reservoirs of Campylobacter infection in broiler chicken flocks. We investigated the potential importance of wildlife as a source of infection in commercial poultry flocks and in humans by comparing the serotype distributions, fla types, and macrorestriction profiles (MRPs) of C. jejuni isolates from different sources. The serotype distribution in wildlife was significantly different from the known distributions in broilers and humans. Considerable sero- and genotype diversity was found within the wildlife collection, although two major groups of isolates within serotype O:12 and the O:4 complex were found. Common clonal lines among wildlife, chicken, and/or human isolates were identified within serotype O:12 and the O:4 complex. However, MRPs of O:12 and O:38 strains isolated from wildlife and other sources indicated that some clonal lines propagated in a wide selection of animal species but were not detected in humans or broilers in this study. The applied typing methods successfully identified different clonal groups within a strain collection showing large genomic diversity. However, the relatively low number of wildlife strains with an inferred clonal relationship to human and chicken strains suggests that the importance of wildlife as a reservoir of infection is limited.
    Original languageEnglish
    JournalApplied and Environmental Microbiology
    Issue number7
    Pages (from-to)3115-3121
    Publication statusPublished - 2001

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