Prevalence of Salmonella spp. in Cane Toads (Bufo marinus) from Grenada, West Indies, and their Antimicrobial Susceptibility

Authors


H. Hariharan. Pathobiology Academic Program, School of Veterinary Medicine, St George’s University, St George’s, Grenada, West Indies. Tel.: +1 473 444 4175, Extension: 3677; Fax: +1 473 439 5068; E-mail: hhariharan@sgu.edu

Summary

Cloacal swabs and caecal contents sampled from 58 cane toads (Bufo marinus) in St George’s parish, Grenada, during a 7-month period in 2011 were examined by an enrichment and selective culture method for presence of Salmonella spp. Twenty-four (41%) toads were positive for Salmonella spp. of which eight were Salmonella enterica serovar Javiana, and eight were S. enterica serovar Rubislaw. The other serovars were as follows: Montevideo, 6; Arechavaleta, 1; and serovar: IV:43:-:-, 1. The high frequency of isolation of serovar Javiana, an emerging human pathogen associated with several outbreaks in the recent years in the eastern United States, suggests a possible role for cane toads in transmission of this serovar. Although S. Rubislaw has been isolated from lizards, bats and cases of some human infections, there is no report of its carriage by cane toads, and in such high frequency. The rate of carriage of S. Montevideo, a cause for human foodborne outbreaks around the world was also over 10% in the 58 toads sampled in this study. The antimicrobial drug susceptibility tests against amoxicillin-clavulanic acid, ampicillin, cefotaxime, ceftazidime, ciprofloxacin, enrofloxacin, gentamicin, imipenem, nalidixic acid, streptomycin, tetracycline and trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole showed that drug resistance is minimal and is of little concern. Antimicrobial resistance was limited to ampicillin and amoxicillin-clavulanic acid in one isolate of S. Javiana and one isolate of S. Rubislaw. This is the first report of isolation and antimicrobial susceptibilities of various Salmonella serovars not identified previously in cane toads in Grenada, West Indies.

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