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A nationwide multi-locus sequence typing (MLST) survey was implemented to analyze patterns of host association among Campylobacter jejuni and Campylobacter coli isolates from clinical disease in Scotland (July 2005-September 2006), food animals (chickens, cattle, sheep, pigs and turkey), non-food animals (wild birds) and the environment. Sequence types (STs) were determined for 5247 clinical isolates and 999 from potential disease sources (augmented with 2420 published STs). Certain STs were over represented among particular sample sets/host groups. These host-associated STs were identified for all sample groups in both Campylobacter species and host associated clonal complexes (groups of related STs) were characterized for C. jejuni. Some genealogical lineages were present in both human disease and food animal samples. This provided evidence for the relative importance of different infection routes/food animal sources in human disease. These results show robust associations of particular genotypes with potential infection sources supporting the contention that contaminated poultry is a major source of human disease.

Original publication




Journal article


Int J Food Microbiol

Publication Date





96 - 103


Animals, Bacterial Typing Techniques, Campylobacter, Campylobacter Infections, Campylobacter coli, Campylobacter jejuni, Cattle, Chickens, DNA, Bacterial, Disease Reservoirs, Environmental Microbiology, Food Contamination, Food Microbiology, Genotype, Humans, Poultry, Scotland, Sequence Analysis, Species Specificity, Swine, Turkeys