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Prevalence and Antimicrobial Susceptibility of Salmonella Isolated from a Variety of Raw Meat Sausages in Gaborone (Botswana) Retail Stores

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The objective of the study was to provide baseline data on the prevalence and antimicrobial susceptibility of Salmonella in different types of raw meat sausages directly accessible to the consumers in Gaborone, Botswana. A total of 300 raw sausages comprising 79 beef, 78 pork, 72 chicken, and 71 mutton samples were concurrently analyzed for the presence of Salmonella using a conventional culture method and a validated PCR method. The PCR assay results were in full concordance with those of the conventional culture method for the detection of Salmonella. Sixty-five (21.7%) of 300 samples were positive for Salmonella by both the conventional culture method and PCR assay. Even though more chicken samples contained Salmonella than did any other sausage type, the difference in the presence of Salmonella among the four sausages types was not significant. Eleven serotypes were identified, and Salmonella enterica subsp. salamae II was most prevalent in all the sausage types. Beef sausages generally had higher mesophilic bacterial counts than did the other three sausage types. However, higher microbial counts were not reflective of the presence of salmonellae. Susceptibility of the Salmonella enterica serotypes to 20 antimicrobial agents was determined, and Salmonella Muenchen was resistant to the widest array of agents and was mostly isolated from chicken sausages. Regardless of the meat of origin, all 65 Salmonella isolates were resistant to at least four antimicrobial agents: amikacin, gentamicin, cefuroxime, and tombramycin. This resistance profile group was the most common in all four sausage types, comprising 90% of all Salmonella isolates from beef, 71% from pork, 63% from mutton, and 35% from chicken. These results suggest that raw sausages pose a risk of transmitting multidrug-resistant Salmonella isolates to consumers.

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: Department of Biological Sciences, University of Botswana, Private Bag UB00704, Gaborone, Botswana 2: Department of Biological Sciences, University of Botswana, Private Bag UB00704, Gaborone, Botswana., Email:

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