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Trends in antimicrobial susceptibility among isolates of Campylobacter species in Ireland and the emergence of resistance to ciprofloxacin
  1. B. Lucey, FAMLS1,
  2. B. Cryan, MB, FRCPath1,
  3. F. O'Halloran, PhD2,
  4. P. G. Wall, BVM, MB3,
  5. T. Buckley, MSc, FIBMS4 and
  6. S. Fanning, PhD1
  1. 1 Department of Medical Microbiology, Cork University Hospital, Wilton, Cork, Ireland
  2. 2 Molecular Diagnostics Unit, Cork Institute of Technology, Bishopstown, Cork, Ireland
  3. 3 Food Safety Authority of Ireland, Abbey Court House, Lower Abbey Street, Dublin 1, Ireland
  4. 4 Irish Equine Centre, Naas, County Kildare, Ireland


Measurements were made of the susceptibility to six commonly prescribed antibiotics, including erythromycin, tetracycline and ciprofloxacin, of 130 isolates of Campylobacter jejuni and 15 isolates of Campylobacter coli cultured from human and poultry sources during 2000. The results were compared with the results from a collection of strains isolated between 1996 and 1998. The levels of resistance to erythromycin remained low, 2 per cent and 4.4 per cent for the human and poultry isolates, respectively. Resistance to tetracycline had increased to 31 per cent and 24.4 per cent from 13.9 per cent and 18.8 per cent for the human and poultry isolates, respectively. However, the resistance to ciprofloxacin of the strains isolated during 2000 had increased to 30 per cent, whereas between 1996 and 1998 there had been no resistance to this agent among human isolates, and only 3-1 per cent resistance among poultry isolates. The molecular basis for this resistance has been shown to be the result of a single amino acid substitution, Thr-86-lle, in the gyrA subunit of DNA gyrase in C jejuni. A subset of 59 isolates was tested by molecular methods and all of the 25 phenotypically resistant isolates possessed this substitution. None of the human isolates had been treated with ciprofloxacin before their laboratory isolation.

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