Longitudinal Study of Shiga Toxin-Producing Escherichia coli and Campylobacter jejuni on Finnish Dairy Farms and in Raw Milk

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Jaakkonen , A , Castro , H , Hallanvuo , S , Ranta , J , Rossi , M , Isidro , J , Lindström , M & Hakkinen , M 2019 , ' Longitudinal Study of Shiga Toxin-Producing Escherichia coli and Campylobacter jejuni on Finnish Dairy Farms and in Raw Milk ' , Applied and Environmental Microbiology , vol. 85 , no. 7 , e02910-18 . https://doi.org/10.1128/AEM.02910-18

Title: Longitudinal Study of Shiga Toxin-Producing Escherichia coli and Campylobacter jejuni on Finnish Dairy Farms and in Raw Milk
Author: Jaakkonen, Anniina; Castro, Hanna; Hallanvuo, Saija; Ranta, Jukka; Rossi, Mirko; Isidro, Joana; Lindström, Miia; Hakkinen, Marjaana
Other contributor: University of Helsinki, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine
University of Helsinki, Food Hygiene and Environmental Health
University of Helsinki, Mirko Rossi Research Group
University of Helsinki, Miia Lindström / Principal Investigator
University of Helsinki, Finnish Food Safety Authority (EVIRA)




Date: 2019-04
Language: eng
Number of pages: 17
Belongs to series: Applied and Environmental Microbiology
ISSN: 0099-2240
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1128/AEM.02910-18
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10138/301156
Abstract: Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli (STEC) and Campylobacter jejuni are notable health hazards associated with the consumption of raw milk. These bacteria may colonize the intestines of asymptomatic cattle and enter bulk tank milk via fecal contamination during milking. We studied the frequency of STEC O157:H7 and C. jejuni contamination in tank milk (n = 785) and the in-line milk filters of milking machines (n = 631) versus the frequency of isolation from cattle feces (n = 257) on three Finnish dairy farms for 1 year. Despite simultaneous isolation of STEC O157:H7 (17%) or C. jejuni (53%) from cattle, these bacteria were rarely isolated from milk filters (2% or = 11 months, and several other C. jejuni types were detected sporadically. The stx gene carried by STEC was detected more frequently from milk filters (37%) than from milk (7%), suggesting that milk filters are more suitable sampling targets for monitoring than milk. A questionnaire of on-farm practices suggested lower stx contamination of milk when major cleansing in the barn, culling, or pasturing of dairy cows was applied, while a higher average outdoor temperature was associated with higher stx contamination. Because pathogen contamination occurred despite good hygiene and because pathogen detection from milk and milk filters proved challenging, we recommend heat treatment for raw milk before consumption. The increased popularity of raw milk consumption has created demand for relaxing legislation, despite the risk of contamination by pathogenic bacteria, notably STEC and C. jejuni. However, the epidemiology of these milk-borne pathogens on the herd level is still poorly understood, and data are lacking on the frequency of milk contamination on farms with cattle shedding these bacteria in their feces. This study suggests (i) that STEC contamination in milk can be reduced, but not prevented, by on-farm hygienic measures while fecal shedding is observable, (ii) that milk filters are more suitable sampling targets for monitoring than milk although pathogen detection from both sample matrices may be challenging, and (iii) that STEC and C. jejuni genotypes may persist in cattle herds for several months. The results can be utilized in developing and targeting pathogen monitoring and risk management on the farm level and contributed to the revision of Finnish legislation in 2017.
Subject: Campylobacter jejuni
Escherichia coli
STEC
cattle
genomics
milk
BULK TANK MILK
PREVALENCE
TRANSMISSION
VIRULENCE
SURVIVAL
SPP.
PATHOGENS
SEQUENCE
STRAINS
O157-H7
1183 Plant biology, microbiology, virology
412 Animal science, dairy science
3142 Public health care science, environmental and occupational health
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