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Objectives: The purpose of this study was to investigate the presence and serovar identity of Salmonella, at the national level, in farmed Muscovy ducks (Cairina moschata) in Trinidad and Tobago, and to compare the relative benefits of bacterial culture to those of polymerase chain reaction (PCR) for use in the routine detection and surveillance of Salmonella in these ducks.

Methods: From March-September 2003, 110 fecal samples were collected from 82 farms across the islands of Trinidad and Tobago. Salmonella was isolated from fresh and frozen samples and the serotype of each was determined through bacterial culture. An in-house, nested PCR that detects all pathogenic Salmonella species was utilized in analyzing the samples.

Results: Five samples were positive for Salmonella by bacterial culture, whereas 44 were positive by the nested PCR. Serovars isolated were Kiambu, Orion, Uganda, and two isolates from Group E1 whose H antigens could not be fully characterized. Of the samples, 87 (79%) gave equivalent PCR results for both enrichment broths-28 were positive for both and 59 were negative for both). However, 16 samples were positive for one broth, but not for the other, with the majority (14 of the 16) resulting positive for Selenite broth. PCR results for seven samples were inconclusive due to ambiguous band size or multiple bands near the expected band size.

Conclusions: In Trinidad and Tobago, the Muscovy duck does not appear to be a significant source of S. typhimurium or S. enteritidis, but it does harbor other Salmonella species. In-house, nested PCR represents a simple, relatively inexpensive and potentially more sensitive method than bacterial culture for the routine surveillance of pathogenic Salmonella in the Muscovy duck.


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Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License.

Publication Title

Revista panamericana de salud publica = Pan American journal of public health


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Chemistry Commons



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