Prevalence of antibiotic resistance in Campylobacter isolates from commercial poultry suppliers in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa

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Campylobacter jejuni isolated from broiler and layer chickens from registered abattoirs in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa, were tested for their susceptibility to eight antibiotics.


Using agar dilution, susceptibility to eight antibiotics was determined for C. jejuni recovered from the caeca.


A total of 155 isolates were collected of which 77 were identified as C. jejuni (broilers n=56 and layers n=21). Resistance was highest to tetracycline (broilers 98.2% and layers 100%) and ceftriaxone (broilers 96.4% and layers 100%). High susceptibility was found to ciprofloxacin (broilers 91% and layers 76%) and gentamicin (broilers 98% and layers 81%). Susceptibilities to each of the antibiotics for the broilers and layers, respectively, were: 50% and 57% for erythromycin, 45% and 24% for clarithromycin, 68% and 43% for ampicillin and 64% and 48% for nalidixic acid. Statistically significant differences were detected for the MIC50 of gentamicin, ciprofloxacin and tetracycline between broilers and layers (P < 0.001) with the MIC90 of gentamicin also of significant difference (P=0.01). Multiresistance was detected in 23% and 43% of the isolates from broiler and layer chickens, respectively.


Mass therapy procedures used in animal husbandry have a potential impact on antibiotic resistance development in C. jejuni.

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