2023 journal article

Detection of resistance and virulence plasmids in Campylobacter coli and Campylobacter jejuni isolated from North Carolina food animal production, 2018-2019


By: D. Hull n , E. Harrel n, L. Harden n & S. Thakur n 

co-author countries: United States of America πŸ‡ΊπŸ‡Έ
author keywords: Antimicrobial resistance; Food -borne pathogen; Horizontal gene transfer; Transposons; Bioinformatics
Source: Web Of Science
Added: October 2, 2023

Campylobacter remains the leading cause of bacterial foodborne illness in the U.S. and worldwide. Campylobacter plasmids may play a significant role in antimicrobial resistance (AMR) and virulence factor distribution, and potentially drive rapid adaptation. C. coli (n = 345) and C. jejuni (n = 199) isolates collected from live cattle, swine, turkey, and chickens, poultry carcasses at production, and retail meat in N.C. were analyzed to determine plasmid prevalence, extrachromosomal virulence and AMR genes, and the phylogeny of assembled plasmids. Putative plasmids ranging from <2 kb to 237kb were identified with virulence factors present in 66.1% (228/345) C. coli and 88.4% (176/199) C. jejuni plasmids (promoting adherence, invasion, exotoxin production, immune modulation, chemotaxis, mobility, and the type IV secretion system). AMR genes were identified in 21.2% (73/345) C. coli and 28.1% C. jejuni plasmids (conferring resistance to tetracyclines, aminoglycosides, beta-lactams, nucleosides, and lincosamides). Megaplasmids (>100 kb) were present in 25.7% (140/544) of the isolates and carried genes previously recognized to be involved with interspecies recombination. Our study highlights the extensive distribution and diversity of Campylobacter plasmids in food animal production and their role in the dissemination of biomedically important genes. Characterizing Campylobacter plasmids within the food animal production niche is important to understanding the epidemiology of potential emerging strains.