Among 504 clinical lineage II isolates of Listeria monocytogenes isolated during 1958-2010 in Sweden, 119 pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) types (AscI) have been identified based on the number and distribution of all banding patterns in each DNA profile. In this study, these types were further divided into PFGE groups based on the configuration of small bands with sizes 145.5?kb.
Listeria monocytogenes has been reported to cause various infectious diseases in both humans and animals. More rarely, ocular infections have been reported. To our knowledge, only two cases of Listeria keratitis have been described in horses. We report kerato-conjunctivitis in four Norwegian horses associated with L. monocytogenes. Clinically, all cases were presented with recurrent unilateral kerato-conjunctivitis. L. monocytogenes bacteria were isolated from swab samples from all cases, and cytology carried out in 3 cases was indicative of L. monocytogenes infection. The present report describes the first known cases in which L. monocytogenes has been isolated from keratitic lesions in horses in Norway. A potential risk factor may be feeding of silage or haylage, but other sources of infection cannot be ruled out. The phenotypic features including antimicrobial susceptibility and serotype of the isolates are described. Laboratory detection of L. monocytogenes demands extra caution since only low numbers of bacteria were detected in the eye-swabs, probably due to the low volume of sample material and the intracellular niche of the bacterium. A general poor response to treatment in all these cases indicates that clinicians should pay extra attention to intensity and duration of treatment if L. monocytogenes is identified in connection with equine kerato-conjunctivitis.
There was investigated the dynamics of growth of Listeria monocytogenes and Yersinia pseudotuberculosis in soils of sea coast (mid-flight and maritime soils). These bacteria were shown to reproduced well in all researched soils, preferring nevertheless maritime soils. The content of the humus was determined to be the one of the limiting factors restricting the multiplication of pathogenic bacteria in studied soils. Abiotic characteristic of soils of sea coast were established to render the direct positive influence on the preservation and reproduction of pathogenic microflora in them. This is promoted by a degree of a saturation by the bases, cation-exchange capacity, quantity of humus. In the formation of environmental policy it should be taken into account and the human-induced load on the soil should be limited
Packaged fresh pork chops (30-g samples) containing an indigenous bacterial population of approximately 10(7) CFU/g were inoculated with 10(7) CFU of Listeria monocytogenes Scott A per g, heat sealed, and subjected to high-pressure processing at 200 to 400 MPa for up to 90 min. Total counts and the number of surviving L. monocytogenes cells were determined by a spread plate technique on tryptic soy agar and modified Oxford medium, respectively. The pressure destruction was characterized by a dual-behavior, consisting of a step change in the number of survivors (Pk0) with the application of a pressure pulse and a first-order rate drop in the number of survivors during the pressure hold period. Higher pressures resulted in higher rates of microbial inactivation, as indicated by their associated lower D values (and higher k values). The pressure sensitivities of the kinetic parameters were evaluated on the basis of Arrhenius and pressure death time (PDT)-type models. The results suggested that L. monocytogenes was more resistant to pressure inactivation than the indigenous microflora (the volume change of activation, deltaV* [Arrhenius model]), and Zp values (PDT model) were -4.17 x 10(-5) m3 mole(-1) and 134 MPa for indigenous microflora and -3.43 x 10(-5) m3 mole(-1) and 163 MPa for L. monocytogenes respectively.
Isolates of Listeria monocytogenes (n = 932) isolated in Sweden during 1958-2010 from human patients with invasive listeriosis were characterized by serotyping and pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) (AscI). Of the 932 isolates, 183 different PFGE types were identified, of which 83 were each represented by only one isolate. In all, 483 serovar 1/2a isolates were distributed over 114 PFGE types; 90 serovar 1/2b isolates gave 32 PFGE types; 21 serovar 1/2c isolates gave nine PFGE types; three serovar 3b isolates gave one PFGE type; and, 335 serovar 4b isolates gave 31 PFGE types. During the 1980s in Sweden, several serovar 4b cases were associated with the consumption of European raw soft cheese. However, as cheese-production hygiene has improved, the number of 4b cases has decreased. Since 1996, serovar 1/2a has been the dominant L. monocytogenes serovar in human listeriosis in Sweden. Therefore, based on current serovars and PFGE types, an association between human cases of listeriosis and the consumption of vacuum-packed gravad and cold-smoked salmon is suggested.
Enhanced immunological memory responses to Listeria monocytogenes in rodents, as measured by delayed-type hypersensitivity (DTH), adoptive transfer of DTH, and protective immunity, following Lactobacillus casei Shirota ingestion.
We have investigated the effect of orally administered Lactobacillus casei Shirota (L. casei) on immunological memory, as measured by delayed-type hypersensitivity (DTH) and acquired cellular resistance (ACR). The studies were performed in animal models in which the animals were rendered immune by a primary Listeria monocytogenes infection. It was shown that orally administered viable L. casei, and not heat-killed L. casei, enhanced significantly the antigen-specific DTH at 24 and 48 h in Wistar rats, Brown Norway rats, and BALB/c mice in a time- and dose-dependent fashion. L. casei had to be administered at least 3 days prior to the DTH assay at a daily dose of 10(9) CFU in order to induce significant effects. Long-term administration of 10(9) CFU of viable L. casei resulted in enhanced ACR, as demonstrated by reduced L. monocytogenes counts in the spleen and liver and diminished serum alanine aminotransferase activity after reinfection. Enhancement of cell-mediated immunological immune responses by L. casei was further established in an adoptive transfer study. Naïve recipient BALB/c mice, which were infused with nonadherent, immunized spleen cells from L. casei-fed donor BALB/c mice, showed significantly enhanced DTH responses at 24 and 48 h compared to recipient mice which received spleen cells from control donor mice. In conclusion, orally administered L. casei enhanced cell-mediated immunological memory responses. The effects relied on lactobacillus dose and viability as well as timing of supplementation and, further, appeared to be independent of host species or genetic background.
Consumption of minimally-processed, or fresh-cut, fruit and vegetables has rapidly increased in recent years, but there have also been several reported outbreaks associated with the consumption of these products. Sodium hypochlorite is currently the most widespread disinfectant used by fresh-cut industries. Neutral electrolyzed water (NEW) is a novel disinfection system that could represent an alternative to sodium hypochlorite. The aim of the study was to determine whether NEW could replace sodium hypochlorite in the fresh-cut produce industry. The effects of NEW, applied in different concentrations, at different treatment temperatures and for different times, in the reduction of the foodborne pathogens Salmonella, Listeria monocytogenes and Escherichia coli O157:H7 and against the spoilage bacterium Erwinia carotovora were tested in lettuce. Lettuce was artificially inoculated by dipping it in a suspension of the studied pathogens at 10(8), 10(7) or 10(5) cfu ml(-1), depending on the assay. The NEW treatment was always compared with washing with deionized water and with a standard hypochlorite treatment. The effect of inoculum size was also studied. Finally, the effect of NEW on the indigenous microbiota of different packaged fresh-cut products was also determined. The bactericidal activity of diluted NEW (containing approximately 50 ppm of free chlorine, pH 8.60) against E. coli O157:H7, Salmonella, L. innocua and E. carotovora on lettuce was similar to that of chlorinated water (120 ppm of free chlorine) with reductions of 1-2 log units. There were generally no significant differences when treating lettuce with NEW for 1 and 3 min. Neither inoculation dose (10(7) or 10(5) cfu ml(-1)) influenced the bacterial reduction achieved. Treating fresh-cut lettuce, carrot, endive, corn salad and 'Four seasons' salad with NEW 1:5 (containing about 50 ppm of free chlorine) was equally effective as applying chlorinated water at 120 ppm. Microbial reduction depended on the vegetable tested: NEW and sodium hypochlorite treatments were more effective on carrot and endive than on iceberg lettuce, 'Four seasons' salad and corn salad. The reductions of indigenous microbiota were smaller than those obtained with the artificially inoculated bacteria tested (0.5-1.2 log reduction). NEW seems to be a promising disinfection method as it would allow to reduce the amount of free chlorine used for the disinfection of fresh-cut produce by the food industry, as the same microbial reduction as sodium hypochlorite is obtained. This would constitute a safer, 'in situ', and easier to handle way of ensuring food safety.
We analysed the surveillance data from listeriosis cases notified to the Finnish National Infectious Diseases Register between 1995 and 2004 and describe our recent experience in investigating clusters of listeriosis cases. The number of annual cases varied between 18 and 53 but no trends in incidence were identified (average annual incidence was 7 cases per million inhabitants). Only a few cases affected pregnant women or newborns. Most of the patients were elderly people with non-malignant underlying illnesses; 25% of them died from their infections. By routine sero- and genotyping of the listeria isolates, we detected several clusters; the vehicle for infection was only identified for two outbreaks. At least one quarter of listeriosis cases (78/315) was caused by a certain sero-genotype or closely related genotypes, which have also been found from vacuum-packed cold-smoked or cold-salted fish products. During 2000-2003, Finnish consumers were repeatedly informed about food precautions for risk groups. The information was also given to attending physicians and prenatal clinics.