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Pesquisa Veterinária Brasileira

Print version ISSN 0100-736XOn-line version ISSN 1678-5150


ACOSTA, Atzel Candido et al. Frequency of toxin-encoding genes in Staphylococcus aureus isolated from community milk tanks. Pesq. Vet. Bras. [online]. 2017, vol.37, n.7, pp.691-696. ISSN 0100-736X.

The capacity of toxin production by Staphylococcus aureus in milk and dairy products is associated with food poisoning outbreaks. The objective of this research was to study the frequency of genes encoding staphylococcal enterotoxin (sea, seb, sed, seg, seh and sei) and α and β hemolytic toxins (hla and hlb) in S. aureus isolates from 53 milk samples from community tanks in the State of Alagoas, Brazil. Twenty-seven isolates (50.94%) were identified as S. aureus by nuc gene amplification; 13/27 isolates (48.1%) were positive for at least one gene of the studied enterotoxins and the frequency of genes sea was 33.3%, seh 18.5%, sei 11.1% and sed 7.4%; the seb and sec genes have not been identified in the bacteria. For the hemolytic toxins, 51.9% of isolates harbored both genes (hla and hlb), the frequency of hla gene was 81.5% and 51.9% for the hlb gene. The evaluated toxin-encoding gene frequency is high and constitutes a potential risk for public health, especially staphylococcal enterotoxin genes; because they are heat-stable enterotoxins and have been associated with food poisoning.

Keywords : Enterotoxin gene; PCR; superantigen genes; SE genes; milk.

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