Short-term evidence of Campylobacter in a treatment plant and drain water of a connected poultry abattoir

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To study the prevalence of Campylobacter in a purification plant, the numbers of Campylobacter in the wastewater and the effluent of an activated sludge system and in the drain water of a poultry abattoir, connected with this plant were determined in three 24-hour periods. To study transmission routes, the Campylobacter isolates were identified by Penner serotyping and by antimicrobial susceptibility testing.

The poultry abattoir drain water was considerably contaminated with Campylobacter (average >5.1 log10 MPN/100 mL). The numbers of Campylobacter present in the wastewater and the effluent of the activated sludge system did not increase significantly during the sampling period. The purification resulted in a reduction of 1 log10 unit, but Campylobacter was still detectable in the activated sludge effluent. Patterns in the antimicrobial susceptibility and serotypes did not match for the various types of samples, and therefore, no transmission route could be deduced. This incongruity of patterns may be due to growth competition during the enrichment. Therefore, enrichment procedures are not recommendable for studies on transmission routes.


Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: March 1, 1996

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  • Water Environment Research® (WER®) publishes peer-reviewed research papers, research notes, state-of-the-art and critical reviews on original, fundamental and applied research in all scientific and technical areas related to water quality, pollution control, and management. An annual Literature Review provides a review of published books and articles on water quality topics from the previous year.

    Published as: Sewage Works Journal, 1928 - 1949; Sewage and Industrial Wastes, 1950 - 1959; Journal Water Pollution Control Federation, 1959 - Oct 1989; Research Journal Water Pollution Control Federation, Nov 1989 - 1991; Water Environment Research, 1992 - present.
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