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Detection, distribution and probable fate of Escherichia coli O157 from asymptomatic cattle on a dairy farm

Porter, J., Mobbs, K., Hart, C.A., Saunders, J.R., Pickup, R.W., Edwards, C.
Journal of applied microbiology 1997 v.83 no.3 pp. 297-306
Escherichia coli O157, bacteria, dairy cattle, dairy farming, farms, feces, grasses, immunomagnetic separation, slurries, soil
The use of commercial anti-Escherichia coli O157-labelled magnetic beads was investigated to improve detection of E. coli O157 by immunomagnetic separation (IMS) from a range of environments on a dairy farm. Immunomagnetic separation proved effective for separation of target cells from laboratory mixtures and during stress in sterile and non-sterile pond water. The IMS procedure was possible with a range of samples (water, faeces, slurry, grass and soil). Non-specific binding of non-target bacterial cells proved problematic in a number of sample types. However, indigenous E. coli O157 cells were detected from samples with a high faecal load, and only with use of IMS. Data on the probable survival and spread of the organism around the farm environment are also discussed.