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Factors influencing the persistence of Escherichia coli O157:H7 lineages in feces from cattle fed grain versus grass hay diets

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Abstract:

Escherichia coli O157:H7 is a pathogenic, gram-negative bacterium that causes diarrhea, hemorrhagic colitis, and can lead to fatal hemolytic uremic syndrome in humans. We examined the persistence of E. coli O157:H7 lineages I and II in feces held at 4, 12, and 25 °C, from animals fed either grain or hay diets. Three strains of each lineage I and II were inoculated into grain-fed or hay-fed feces, and their persistence was monitored over 28 days. No significant differences in E. coli O157:H7 survival between the 2 lineages in both fecal types was found at the examined temperatures. Volatile fatty acids were higher in grain-fed than in hay-fed feces, resulting in consistently lower pH in the grain-fed feces at 4, 12 and 25 °C. Regardless of lineage type, E. coli O157:H7 CFUs were significantly higher in grain-fed than in hay-fed feces at 4 and 25 °C. Escherichia coli O157:H7 survival was highest in grain-fed feces at 25 °C up to 14 days. Our results indicate that the 2 lineages of E. coli O157:H7 do not differ in their persistence; however, it appears that temperature and feces type both affect the survival of the pathogen.

Escherichia coli O157:H7 est une bactérie pathogène, négative à gram, qui cause la diarrhée, la colite hémorragique et une infection qui peut conduire à un syndrome urémique hémolytique fatal chez l’humain. Nous avons examiné la persistance des lignages I et II d’E. coli O157:H7 dans des fèces gardés à 4, 12 et 25 °C, provenant d’animaux nourris aux céréales ou au fourrage. Trois souches de chacun des lignages I et II ont été inoculées dans les fèces provenant d’animaux nourris aux céréales ou au fourrage, et leur persistance a été suivie pendant 28 jours. Aucune différence significative dans la survie des 2 types de lignages d’E. coli O157:H7 cultivés dans les 2 types de matière fécale n’a été trouvée aux températures examinées. Les acides gras volatiles étaient plus abondants dans les fèces provenant d’animaux nourris aux céréales, résultant en des pH systématiquement plus bas à 4, 12 et 25 °C dans ces échantillons. Peu importe le type de lignage, le nombre d’UFCs d’E. coli O157:H7 était significativement plus élevé dans les fèces provenant d’animaux nourris aux céréales à 4 et 25 °C. Le taux de survie d’E. coli O157:H7 était le plus élevé dans les fèces provenant d’animaux nourris aux céréales et incubés à 25 °C, et ce, jusqu’à 14 jours d’incubation. Nos résultats indiquent que les deux lignages d’E. coli O157:H7 ne diffèrent pas dans leur persistance, mais il semble que la température et l’origine des fèces affectent toutes deux la survie du pathogène.

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: August 1, 2010

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  • Published since 1954, this monthly journal contains new research in the field of microbiology including applied microbiology and biotechnology; microbial structure and function; fungi and other eucaryotic protists; infection and immunity; microbial ecology; physiology, metabolism and enzymology; and virology, genetics, and molecular biology. It also publishes review articles and notes on an occasional basis, contributed by recognized scientists worldwide.
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