J Vet Sci.  2019 May;20(3):e26. 10.4142/jvs.2019.20.e26.

Multiplex PCR analysis of virulence genes and their influence on antibiotic resistance in Enterococcus spp. isolated from broiler chicken

Affiliations
  • 1Avian Disease Division, Animal and Plant Quarantine Agency, Gimcheon 39660, Korea. johsj0901@korea.kr

Abstract

Enterococcus spp. are opportunistic pathogens that cause lameness in broiler chickens, resulting in serious economic losses worldwide. Virulence of Enterococcus spp. is associated with several putative virulence genes including fsr, efm, esp, cylA, cad1, ace, gelE, and asa1. In this study, multiplex polymerase chain reaction (PCR) for the simultaneous detection of these virulence genes in Enterococcus spp. was developed, and detection limits for E. faecium, E. faecalis, and E. hirae were 64.0 pg/µL, 320.0 pg/µL, and 1.6 ng/µL DNA, respectively. Among 80 Enterococcus isolates tested, efm and cad1 were detected in all 26 E. faecium samples, and only cad1 was observed in E. hirae. Additionally, the presence of virulence genes in 25 E. faecalis isolates were 100% for cad1, 88.0% for gelE, 64.0% for fsr, 44.0% for asa1, 16.0% for cylA, and 4.0% for esp. No virulence genes were found in E. gallinarum isolates. A total of 49 isolates were resistant to tigecycline and to at least 2 different classes of antibiotics. The most prevalent resistance was to ciprofloxacin (73.5%), quinupristin/dalfopristin (55.1%), and tetracycline (49.0%). No strains were resistant to vancomycin or linezolid. This is the first multiplex PCR assay to simultaneously detect eight virulence genes in Enterococcus spp., and the method provides diagnostic value for accurate, rapid, and convenient detection of virulence genes. Additionally, we report the prevalence of virulence genes and antimicrobial resistance in Enterococcus isolates from commercial broiler chickens suffering lameness.

Keyword

Multiplex polymerease chain reaction; virulence genes; antimicrobial drug resistance; Enterococcus spp.; broiler chickens

MeSH Terms

Anti-Bacterial Agents
Chickens*
Ciprofloxacin
DNA
Drug Resistance, Microbial*
Enterococcus*
Limit of Detection
Linezolid
Methods
Multiplex Polymerase Chain Reaction*
Prevalence
Tetracycline
Vancomycin
Virulence*
Anti-Bacterial Agents
Ciprofloxacin
DNA
Linezolid
Tetracycline
Vancomycin
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