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  • Author or Editor: Cynthia J. Lindeman x
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Objective—To compare sensitivity of several methods of bacteriologic culture of pooled bovine fecal samples for detection of Mycobacterium paratuberculosis and evaluate homogeneity in number of M paratuberculosisin pooled fecal samples.

Sample Population—Feces from 10 dairy cows that shed M paratuberculosis at various concentrations and 1 dairy cow known to be free of infection with M paratuberculosis.

Procedure—5 fecal pooling methods, 2 culture methods, and 2 pool sizes were evaluated. Each pooled sample contained 1 infected sample and 4 or 9 uninfected samples.

Results—Sensitivity of detection of M paratuberculosis was greater with smaller pool size (5 vs 10 samples/ pool). Detection sensitivity was also associated with concentration of bacteria in the infected sample. Results indicated that, compared with concurrent bacterial culture of individual infected samples, 37 to 44% of pooled samples with low bacterial concentrations yielded positive culture results and 94% of pooled samples with high bacterial concentrations yielded positive results.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Bacteriologic culture of pooled fecal samples may provide a valid and cost-effective method of detecting M paratuberculosis infection in cattle herds. (Am J Vet Res 2002;63:1207–1211)

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in American Journal of Veterinary Research


Objectives—To determine the sensitivity of bacteriologic culture of pooled fecal samples in detecting Mycobacterium paratuberculosis, compared with bacteriologic culture of individual fecal samples in dairy cattle herds.

Study Design—Cross-sectional study.

Animals—24 dairy cattle herds.

Procedure—Individual and pooled fecal samples were submitted for bacteriologic culture, and results were compared between these groups.

Results—Ninety-four and 88% of pooled fecal samples that contained feces from at least 1 animal with high (mean, ≥ 50 colonies/tube) and moderate (mean, 10 to 49 colonies/tube) concentrations of M paratuberculosis, respectively, were identified by use of bacteriologic culture of pooled fecal samples. Prevalences of paratuberculosis determined by bacteriologic culture of pooled and individual fecal samples were highly correlated.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Bacteriologic culture of pooled fecal samples provided a valid and cost-effective method for the detection of M paratuberculosis infection in dairy cattle herds and can be used to estimate prevalence of infection within a herd. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 2003;223:1022–1025)

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association