Public Health Resources


Date of this Version



Food Microbiology 38 (2014) 6-15;


There is conflicting data regarding whether commercial chilling has any effect on persistence of Salmonella serovars, including antibiotic resistant variants, on chicken carcasses. A total of 309 Salmonella Typhimurium and Salmonella Kentucky isolates recovered from pre- and post-chill whole broiler carcasses were characterized for genetic relatedness using Pulsed Field Gel Electrophoresis (PFGE) and for the presence of virulence factors (invA, pagC, spvC) by PCR and for aerobactin and colicin production by bioassays. A subset of these isolates (n = 218) displaying resistance to either sulfisoxazole and/or ceftiofur [S. Typhimurium (n = 66) and S. Kentucky (n = 152)] were further tested for the presence of associated antibiotic resistance elements (class-I integrons and blaCMY genes) by PCR. All 145 ceftiofur resistant S. Kentucky and S. Typhimurium isolates possessed blaCMY genes. Class-I integrons were only detected in 6.1% (n = 4/66) of sulfisoxazole resistant S. Typhimurium isolates. The PFGE analysis revealed the presence of genetically diverse populations within the recovered isolates but clusters were generally concordant with serotypes and antimicrobial resistance profiles. At a 100% pattern similarity index, thirty-six percent of the undistinguishable S. Typhimurium and 22% of the undistinguishable S. Kentucky isolates were recovered from the same chilling step. All isolates possessed the invA and pagC genes, but only 1.4%possessed spvC. Irrespective of the chilling step, there was a significant difference (P < 0.05) in the production of aerobactin and colicin between S. Typhimurium and S. Kentucky isolates. Taken together, these results indicate that chilling impacted the recovery of particular Salmonella clonal groups but had no effect on the presence of class-I integrons, blaCMY genes, and tested virulence factors.