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Browsing by Author "Olkkola, Satu"

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  • Olkkola, Satu (University of HelsinkiHelsingin yliopistoHelsingfors universitet, 2008)
    My licentiate thesis is a part of a project called Analytics, Antimicrobial Resistance and Prevention of Yersinia enterocolitica in an Abattoir and it is financed by the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry. The thesis consists of both literary review and laboratory research parts. According to Finlands' Infectious Diseases Register Y. enterocolitica is the third most common food derived agent causing alimentary track infections. In Finland prevalence of Y. enterocolitca in pig tonsils has been studied since 1980's and it has increased from 36 percent in 1988 to 56 percent in 2000. Between years 1995 and 2006 the reported human cases have been usually between 400 and 700 cases/year. At present the genus Yersinia includes 12 species, three of which have clearly been shown to be pathogenic to humans: Y. pestis, Y. pseudotuberculosis and Y. enterocolitica. The remaining 9 species have not been clearly shown to cause disease in people. The most common bioserotypes of Y. enterocolitica causing human disease are 4/O:3, 2/O:5,27, 1B/O:8 and 2/O:9. The most common pathogenic bioserotype in Finland is 4/O:3. Swine have been shown to be the reservoir of human pathogenic Y. enterocolitca strains and tonsils are considered to be a reliable tissue for studying its prevalence in swine. Prevalence is greatest in the fattening phase and the pathogen has been shown to be transmitted from one pig to another and not so much from the environment. The prevalence of Y. enterocolitica in swine is mainly influenced by the production type and size of the farm and whether a conventional or alternative housing system is used: generally the prevalence in big conventional fattening heards can be expected to be higher than in small alternative multiplying or farrow-to-finish herds. The purpose of the research part was to determine the prevalence of Y. enterocolitica 4/O:3 in the tonsils of Finnish pigs and investigate the effect of herd size and production type. Initial hypothesis was that the prevalence had further increased and that in big and fattening heards it would be more abundant than in small and multiplying or farrow-to-finish herds. The sample material consisted of 200 swine tonsils that had been collected from one slaughterhouse during 8 days in year 2007. Tonsils originated from 39 farms including farrow-to-finish, multiplying/farrow-to-finish, fattening and multiplying herds. The samples where cold enriched for 1-2 weeks, cultured on cefsulodin irgasan novobiosin (CIN) agar and isolates were bio- and serotyped. Y. enterocolitica 4/O:3 was found in 72 % of the tonsils and 90 % of the farms had at least one positive animal. According to these results its prevalence has increased from the previous studies. There was a statistically significant difference in the prevalences between big (annual slaughtering rate over 1000 pigs) and small (annual slaughtering rate 1000 pigs or less) farms: in big farms Y. enterocolitica 4/O:3 occurred in 87 % of pigs whereas in small farms in 57 % (χ2=13,24, p-value 0,0003). These results were as expected according to the initial hypothesis. The production type didn't seem to influence the prevalence of the bacterium in farms or pigs except when multiplying herds were considered. Also the size of the herd didn't seem to have an effect on the amount of positive farms: 90 % of small and 89 % of big farms were positive. However due to the small farm sample size definitive conclusions can not be made based on this information. Other bioserotypes of Y. enterocolitica and other Yersinia species were isolated very seldomly: Y. pseudotuberculosis was found in two tonsils (1 %) and Y. kristensenii was also isolated from two tonsils (1%). This could be expected since our isolation method was developed mainly for the isolation of Y. enterocolitica 4/O:3.