Genotypic and Antibiotic Susceptibility Characteristics of a Campylobacter coli Population Isolated from Dairy Farmland in the United Kingdom

A. J H Leatherbarrow, C. A. Hart, R. Kemp, N. J. Williams, A. Ridley, M. Sharma, P. J. Diggle, E. J. Wright, J. Sutherst, N. P. French

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Campylobacter infections are the most common cause of bacterial enteritis in humans, and nearly 8% of such infections are caused by Campylobacter coli. Most studies have concentrated on Campylobacter jejuni, frequently isolated from intensively farmed poultry and livestock production units, and few studies have examined the spread and relatedness of Campylobacter across a range of geographical and host boundaries. Systematic sampling of a 100-km2 area of mixed farmland in northwest England yielded 88 isolates of C. coli from a range of sample types and locations, and water was heavily represented. Screening for antibiotic resistance revealed a very low prevalence of resistance, while genotyping performed by using three methods (flaA PCR restriction fragment length polymorphism [RFLP], pulsed-field gel electrophoresis [PFGE], and fluorescent amplified fragment length polymorphism [fAFLP]) provided insights into the genomic relatedness of isolates from different locations and hosts. Isolates were classified into 23 flaA groups, 34 PFGE groups, and five major fAFLP clusters. PFGE banding analysis revealed a high level of variability and no clustering by sample type. fAFLP and flaA analyses successfully grouped the isolates by sample type. We report preliminary findings suggesting that there is a strain of C. coli which may have become adapted to survival or persistence in water and that there is a group of mainly water-derived isolates from which unusual flaA PCR fragments were recovered.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)822-830
Number of pages9
JournalApplied and Environmental Microbiology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2004
Externally publishedYes


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Science(all)
  • Biotechnology
  • Microbiology

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