Advances in Life Science and Biotechnology

The virulence profiles and the antimicrobial drug resistance of Escherichia coli isolates from beef carcasses at an abattoir in Brazil


Shivalingsarj V. Desai and Mandyam C. Varadaraj

Shiga toxin -producing Escherichia coli (STEC) is recognized wordwide as human pathogen. During the processing of carcasses, fecal contamination or transfer of bacteria from the animals’ hide to carcasses can promote transmission of pathogenic E. coli to food supplies. A survey was performed to determine the sensibility profile to several antimicrobial drugs of STEC in carcasses obtained from an abattoir in Brazil between March 2008 and August at 2009. A total of 120 STEC were isolated. All isolates were confirmed as being E. coli by their biochemical analysis and submitted to Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) for detection of stx, eae and ehly genes. The most frequent resistance was seen against cephalothin (84.0%), streptomycin (45.0%), nalidixic acid (42.0%) and tetracycline (20.0%). Multidrug resistance (MDR) to three or more antimicrobial agents was observed in 46 (38.3%) E. coli isolates. The presence of STEC and MDR strains among the isolates in the beef carcasses emphasizes the importance of proper handling to prevent carcass contamination.


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