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Research article2020Peer reviewedOpen access

Multidrug-resistant Campylobacter jejuni, Campylobacter coli and Campylobacter lari isolated from asymptomatic school-going children in Kibera slum, Kenya [version 2; peer review: 1 approved, 2 approved with reservations]

Gitahi, N.; Gathura, P.B.; Gicheru, M.M.; Wandia, B.M.; Nordin, A.


Background: The objective of this study was to determine the prevalence of thermophilic Campylobacter spp. in asymptomatic school-going children and establish the antibiotic resistance patterns of the isolates towards the drugs used to treat campylobacteriosis, including macrolides, quinolones and tetracycline. Campylobacter spp. are a leading cause of enteric illness and have only recently shown resistance to antibiotics. Methods: This study isolated Campylobacter spp., including Campylobacter coli, Campylobacter jejuni and Campylobacter lari, in stool samples from asymptomatic school-going children in one of the biggest urban slums in Kenya. The disc diffusion method using EUCAST breakpoints was used to identify antibiotic-resistant isolates, which were further tested for genes encoding for tetracycline resistance using primer-specific polymerase chain reaction. Results: In total, 580 stool samples were collected from 11 primary schools considering both gender and age. Subjecting 294 biochemically characterized Campylobacter spp. isolates to genus-specific PCR, 106 (18.27% of stool samples) isolates were confirmed Campylobacter spp. Out of the 106 isolates, 28 (4.83%) were Campylobacter coli, 44 (7.58%) were Campylobacter jejuni while 11 (1.89%) were Campylobacter lari. Campylobacter jejuni had the highest number of isolates that were multi-drug resistant, with 26 out of the 28 tested isolates being resistant to ciprofloxacin (5 mg), nalidixic acid (30 mg), tetracycline (30 mg) and erythromycin (15 mg). Conclusions: In conclusion, asymptomatic school going children in the study area were found to be carriers of multidrug resistant Campylobacter coli, Campylobacter jejuni and Campylobacter lari at 84%. A one-health approach, which considers overlaps in environment, animals and human ecosystems, is recommended in addressing multidrug resistane in Campylobacter, since animals are the main reservoirs and environmental contamination is evident.


asymptomatic; Campylobacter; genes; Multidrug; resistance

Published in

2020, Volume: 9, article number: 92
Publisher: F1000 Research Ltd

    UKÄ Subject classification

    Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology
    Microbiology in the medical area

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