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Chicken carcasses as a source of Campylobacter jejuni in Belo Horizonte, Brazil

The presence of Campylobacter jejuni was investigated in stool specimens from chicken meat workers and in ready-for-market chicken carcasses from one industrial and nine non industrial slaughters in Belo Horizonte. In the latter C. jejuni was isolated from 19 (38.0%) of the 50 chicken carcasses and from 2 (13.3%) of the stool specimens obtained from 15 chicken meat workers. In the industrial slaughter it was found in only 1 (2.0%) of the 50 chicken carcasses and it was not isolated from any of the 40 stool specimens. There was a significant difference between industrial and non industrial slaughter in regard to the frequence of C. jejuni isolation from carcasses (p = 0.000002), probably due to the low hygiene conditions present in non industrial slaughters. The results of antimicrobial susceptibility tests, SDS gel electrophoresis and biotyping of the strains isolated from stool specimens obtained from chicken meat workers were similar to those observed in strains isolated from chicken carcasses which suggest that chicken could be the source of C. jejuni for the workers and both, chicken and workers, could be implicated in the transmission of C. jejuni infection in Belo Horizonte.

Campylobacter jejuni; Chicken carcasses; Slaughters; Campylobacter jejuni transmission

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