Faecal shedding of verotoxigenic Escherichia coli in cattle in the Czech Republic

https://doi.org/10.17221/3152-VETMEDCitation:Alexa P., Konstantinova L., Sramkova-Zajacova Z. (2011):  Faecal shedding of verotoxigenic Escherichia coli in cattle in the Czech Republic. Veterinarni Medicina, 56: 149-155.
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A survey to estimate the prevalence of verotoxigenic E. coli (VTEC) or enterohaemorrhagic E. coli (EHEC) in rectal swabs from healthy dairy cattle aged three weeks, three months and one year was conducted in three herds from the Czech Republic. Screening for the presence of the stx1, stx2 and eaeA genes in faecal swab cultures was performed by PCR, and in positive samples, isolated colonies were examined. Immunomagnetic separation was used for the isolation of the VTEC serogroup O157 from samples. VTEC were detected in animals from all three herds under study. In the group of 3-week-old calves, VTEC were only detected in samples collected in the summer months. However, in the other age-groups, VTEC were detected in both the summer and winter months. EHEC shedding was observed in 30 to 100% of the total samples collected from cattle aged three months and one year in the summer months, and in 30 to 60% of samples taken in the winter months. EHEC strains of serogroup O157 were detected in two herds. The range of verotoxins shed by VTEC isolates of serogroup O157 differed between herds. Besides serogroup O157, additional EHEC belonging to the antigen groups O26, O103, O128 and O153 have been identified, and in some of them, no somatic antigen was detected.
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