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Prevalence of MRSA types in slaughter pigs in different German abattoirs
  1. B-A. Tenhagen, DMV1,
  2. A. Fetsch, DMV1,
  3. B. Stührenberg, DMV2,
  4. G. Schleuter, DMV3,
  5. B. Guerra, PhD1,
  6. J. A. Hammerl1,
  7. S. Hertwig, PhD1,
  8. J. Kowall1,
  9. U. Kämpe1,
  10. A. Schroeter, PhD1,
  11. J. Bräunig, DMV1,
  12. A. Käsbohrer, DMV, MSc1 and
  13. B. Appel PhD1
  1. 1Federal Institute for Risk Assessment, Diedersdorfer Weg 1, 12277 Berlin, Germany
  2. 2Chemisches und Veterinäruntersuchungsamt Ostwestfalen-Lippe, Westerfeldstrasse 1, 32758 Detmold, Germany
  3. 3Niedersächsisches Landesamt für Verbraucherschutz und Lebensmittelsicherheit, Veterinärinstitut Oldenburg, Philosophenweg 38, 26121 Oldenburg, Germany
  1. E-mail for correspondence: bernd-alois.tenhagen{at}


To investigate the prevalence of types of meticillinresistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) in slaughter pigs in German abattoirs, nasal swabs were collected from a total of 1026 pigs in five abattoirs after stunning in the course of two studies, and examined for MRSA. Study 1 included four abattoirs; study 2 was carried out in one large abattoir. Isolates were tested for antimicrobial susceptibility and characterised using spa-typing, multilocus sequence typing (MLST) and typing of the staphylococcal cassette chromosome, SCCmec. Overall, MRSA was isolated from 70·8 per cent of 520 samples in study 1 and from 49·0 per cent of 506 samples in study 2. The proportion of positive samples varied substantially between the abattoirs in study 1. Most isolates belonged to spa-types t011 and t034 and SCCmec types III and V. MLST of selected isolates revealed that they were all MLST ST398. Besides β-lactams, 100 per cent of the isolates were resistant to tetracycline, 80·5 per cent were resistant to erythromycin and 80·7 per cent were resistant to clindamycin. Less than 5 per cent of the isolates were resistant to other antimicrobials.

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