Incidence and Antimicrobial Resistance Profiling of Campylobacter in Retail Chicken Livers and Gizzards

7 May 2012, at 12:00am

Campylobacter was found in 67 per cent of the 202 chicken livers and gizzards tested sampled. A high level of resistance among <em>C. jejuni</em> and <em>C. coli</em> isolates recovered was found against some of the 16 antimicrobials tested.

Campylobacter species are one of the leading causes of foodborne disease in the United States. In the latest issue of Foodborne Pathogens and Disease, Aneesa Noormohamed and Mohamed K. Fakhr of the University of Tulsa report that Campylobacter jejuni and Campylobacter coli are the two main species that are of concern to human health, and they cause approximately 95 per cent of human infections.

The number of studies investigating Campylobacter in chicken livers and gizzards is very limited in the literature, they say, so the objective of their study was to determine the prevalence of C. jejuni and C. coli in retail chicken livers and gizzards purchased from grocery stores in the Tulsa, Oklahoma, area and to further characterise the isolates obtained through antimicrobial susceptibility testing.

A total of 202 retail chilled chicken livers and gizzards (159 livers and 43 gizzards) were purchased on a weekly basis from several grocery stores.

The overall prevalence of Campylobacter in chicken livers and gizzards was 136/202 (67 per cent), where 69/202 (34 per cent) of the samples were contaminated with C. jejuni and 66/202 (33 per cent) with C. coli.

While the prevalence of Campylobacter in chicken livers was 77 per cent, its prevalence in chicken gizzards was lower at 33 per cent. The prevalence of C. jejuni was slightly higher in chicken livers (36 per cent) than gizzards (26 per cent), while the prevalence of C. coli was significantly higher in the chicken livers (40 per cent) than chicken gizzards (seven per cent).

The prevalence of resistance among C. jejuni and C. coli isolates recovered against 16 antimicrobials were as follows: amoxicillin (98 per cent; 99 per cent), ampicillin (32 per cent; 55 per cent), azithromycin (10 per cent; 25 per cent), cephalothin (92 per cent; 99 per cent), chloramphenicol (4 per cent; 12 per cent), ciprofloxacin (58 per cent; 48 per cent), clindamycin (5 per cent; 19 per cent), doxycycline (39 per cent; 66 per cent), erythromycin (6 per cent; 32 per cent), gentamicin (9 per cent; 43 per cent), kanamycin (11 per cent; 43 per cent), nalidixic acid (50 per cent; 43 per cent), oxytetracycline (99 per cent; 100 per cent), streptomycin (3 per cent; 18 per cent), tetracycline (37 per cent; 60 per cent) and tilmicosin (9 per cent; 16 per cent).

Multi–drug resistance was higher among C. coli than C. jejuni isolates.


Noormohamed A. and M.K. Fakhr. 2012, Incidence and antimicrobial resistance profiling of Campylobacter in retail chicken livers and gizzards. Foodborne Pathogens and Disease. ahead of print. doi:10.1089/fpd.2011.1074

Further Reading

- You can view the full report (fee payable) by clicking here.

May 2012