Occurrence, Antimicrobial Resistance, and Molecular Characterization of Campylobacter spp. in Intensive Pig Production in South Africa
Campylobacter spp. are among the leading foodborne pathogens, causing campylobacteriosis, a zoonotic infection that results in bacterial gastroenteritis and diarrheal disease in animals and humans. This study investigated the molecular epidemiology of antibiotic-resistant Campylobacter spp. isolated across the farm-to-fork-continuum in an intensive pig production system in South Africa. Following ethical approval, samples were collected over sixteen weeks from selected critical points (farm, transport, abattoir, and retail) using a farm-to-fork sampling approach according to WHO-AGISAR guidelines. Overall, 520 samples were investigated for the presence of Campylobacter spp., which were putatively identified using selective media with identity and speciation confirmed by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) of specific genes.
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