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Antibiotic Resistance Profiles and Cell Surface Components of Salmonellae

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Salmonellae were isolated from raw chilled retail poultry meats (n = 100) using the procedures outlined in the Bacteriological Analytical Manual and Microbiology Laboratory Guidebook. These isolates and 36 Salmonella strains from our laboratory culture collection were tested for their resistance to 12 different antibiotics and for their ability to produce thin aggregative fimbriae and/or cellulose, two of the most important surface components influencing the ability of cells to attach to surfaces and form biofilms. The sensitivity of the salmonellae to the antibiotics was determined with a disc diffusion assay. Of 52 Salmonella isolates, 25 (48.0%) were resistant to one antibiotic, 5 (9.6%) were resistant to two, 4 (7.7%) were resistant to three, 6 (11.5%) were resistant to four, and 5 (9.6%) were resistant to five antibiotics. Two (3.8%) of the isolates were resistant to up to nine of the antibiotics tested. Fifty-one (98%) of the isolates were resistant to novobiocin, 18 (34.6%) were resistant to streptomycin, 14 (26.9%) were resistant to tetracycline, and 14 (26.9%) were resistant to oxytetracycline. In separate experiments, the isolates were grown on Luria-Bertani no-salt agar supplemented with Congo red (40 μg/ml) and Coomassie brilliant blue (20 μg/ml) or Calcofluor (200 μg/ml) to determine whether they produced thin aggregative fimbriae and/or cellulose. Of the total 52 Salmonella isolates, 25 expressed only thin aggregative fimbriae, and 1 synthesized only cellulose. Ten isolates produced both thin aggregative fimbriae and cellulose, and the remaining 16 isolates expressed neither surface structure. The findings of this study reveal a prevalence of Salmonella on raw retail poultry products in central Georgia and suggest that salmonellae have the ability to develop resistance to multiple antibiotics and to synthesize cell surface components that help them survive in hostile or suboptimal environments.

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Department of Food Science and Technology, The University of Georgia, 1109 Experiment Street, Griffin, Georgia 30223-1797, USA

Publication date: May 1, 2006

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