Methods: Between September 2016 and May 2017, we collected urine samples from patients with UTI examined at a university-affiliated healthcare center. During the same time, we recovered E.coli from retail meat products (chicken breast, ground turkey, ground beef and pork chops) collected as part of the National Antimicrobial Resistance Monitoring System (NARMS) FDA retail meat sampling program in Northern California. Urine samples and buffered peptone water containing meat samples were cultured on MacConkey agar. Lactose-positive and indole-positive colonies were presumptively identified as E coli. Bacterial DNA was extracted by a freeze-boil method. E. coli isolates were genotyped by multilocus sequence typing (MLST).
Results: Of 1020 urine samples, E. coli was isolated from 210 (21%). Five pandemic MLST genotypes (ST95, ST127, ST69, ST73, and ST131) accounted for 126 (60%) isolates. Of 200 meat samples, E. coli was isolated from 76 (38%). E. coli was isolated from 29 (73%) of 40 ground turkey samples, 34 (43%) of 80 chicken breast, 7 (18%) of 40 ground beef, and 6 (15%) of 40 pork chop. ST69 and ST131 were isolated from 3 chicken samples. Other genotypes of E. coli isolates from meat samples and CA-UTI included ST10 (3), ST38 (2), ST88 (1), ST117 (5), ST906 (1), and ST1844 (1). Eleven (32%) of 34 chicken samples contained UPEC strains, compared to 4 (14%) of 29 ground turkey samples, and 1 (17%) of 6 pork chop samples; no beef samples contained UPEC strains.
Conclusion: Overall, we found that nearly one-quarter of retail poultry products that we tested contained UPEC strains with the same MLST genotypes found in CA-UTI patients. Foodborne transmission may account for a substantial proportion of CA-UTI. Additional studies are needed to demonstrate transmission of these genotypes from poultry to patients and to target possible prevention measures.
C. Friedman, None
P. McDermott, None
M. Hung-Fan, None
L. Riley, None