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Ecology of Salmonella and Shiga Toxigenic E. Coli in Small Ruminants Food Systems

Investigators
Pithua, Patrick
Institutions
University of Missouri - Columbia
Start date
2015
End date
2020
Objective

The long-term project goal is to understand the factors leading to bacterial contamination of lamb or goat meat, and to identify on-farm and post-harvest management strategies for reducing microbiological food safety hazards in small ruminant food systems in the United States. The objective of this application is to identify and characterize potential foodborne pathogens in small ruminants entering the food supply.

The following specific research aims are proposed to achieve this objective.

  1. Quantify the prevalence of Salmonella and Shiga toxigenic E. coli (STEC) serotypes O26, O45, O103, O111, O113, O121 and O145 and O157 in whole muscle lamb, mutton, and chevon cuts sold at retail stores in selected urban stores in Missouri.
  2. Determine the prevalence and characterize serotypes, virulence profiles, and antibiotic resistance in Salmonella and Shiga toxigenic E. coli (STEC) serotypes O26, O45, O103, O111, O113, O121, O145, and O157 shed by live pre-harvest sheep and goats in Missouri.
  3. Measure the associations between the fecal prevalence, environmental contamination, and carcass prevalence of Salmonella, and E. coli serotypes O26, O45, O103, O111, O113, O121, O145, and O157 in in sheep and goats at slaughter.
More information
Ecology of foodborne pathogens in poultry, swine, and beef production systems in the United States has been extensively studied. However, there is a paucity of data on the presence, risk factors, and public health impact of foodborne bacteria from small ruminant food systems. The identities, characteristics, and public health risks of foodborne pathogens from sheep or goats produced in the United States are unknown. To date, there has been very little research on the sources and bacterial contamination risk levels of lamb and goat meat consumed in the United States. Our long-term goal is to better understand the factors leading to bacterial contamination of lamb and goat meat, and to identify the on-farm and postharvest management options for reducing microbiological food safety hazards in small ruminant food systems in the United States. The objective of this application is to identify and characterize foodborne bacteria in small ruminants entering the food supply. The following specific research aims are proposed to achieve this objective: (1) Quantify the prevalence of Salmonella and Shiga toxigenic E. coli (STEC) serotypes O26, O45, O103, O111, O113, O121 and O145 and O157 in whole muscle lamb, mutton, and chevon cuts sold at retail stores in selected urban stores in Missouri; (2) Determine the prevalence and characterize serotypes, virulence profiles, and antibiotic resistance in Salmonella and Shiga toxigenic E. coli (STEC) serotypes O26, O45, O103, O111, O113, O121, O145, and O157 shed by live pre-harvest sheep and goats in Missouri; and (3) Measure the associations between the fecal prevalence, environmental contamination, and carcass prevalence of Salmonella, and E. coli serotypes O26, O45, O103, O111, O113, O121, O145, and O157 in in sheep and goats at slaughter. Research samples and research animals will be sourced from meat retail shops at major cities in Missouri, a small ruminant slaughter facility and a full service stockyard located in central Missouri. Data collection will draw on traditional methods of epidemiological, molecular and microbiological approaches for isolation, serotyping, genotyping, antimicrobial susceptibility testing, and virulence profiling for Salmonella and STEC. This research is expected to reveal high prevalence and significant exposure risk levels of lamb or goat meat to pathogenic Salmonella and STEC bacteria with multi-drug resistance potential. Knowledge gained from this effort will be pivotal in ensuring the development or validation of novel methods for controlling bacterial foodborne hazards in sheep and goats and for identifying management strategies essential for minimizing on-farm and post-harvest microbiological foodborne hazards in sheep or goat populations. These outcomes are desirable for boosting the confidence of lamb and goat meat consumers and are expected to improve profitability for small ruminant farmers while simultaneously protecting public health.
Funding Source
Nat'l. Inst. of Food and Agriculture
Project source
View this project
Project number
MO-HANC0001
Accession number
1008467
Categories
Escherichia coli
Viruses and Prions
Antimicrobial Resistance
Bacterial Pathogens
Commodities
Meat, Poultry, Game