Salmonella Virchow and Salmonella Weltevreden in a Random Survey of the Asian House Gecko, Hemidactylus frenatus, in Houses in Northern Australia

Callaway, Zak, Thomas, Annette, Melrose, Wayne, Buttner, Petra, and Speare, Rick (2011) Salmonella Virchow and Salmonella Weltevreden in a Random Survey of the Asian House Gecko, Hemidactylus frenatus, in Houses in Northern Australia. Vector Borne and Zoonotic Diseases, 11 (6). pp. 621-625.

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Abstract

Background: Salmonella enterica serotype Virchow is the most common cause of invasive nontyphoid salmonellosis in North Queensland, particularly in infants, but the zoonotic source is unknown. This study aimed at determining (i) the prevalence of the introduced Asian house gecko, Hemidactylus frenatus, in houses in North Queensland and (ii) whether they were a potential source of Salmonella Virchow.

Methods: Asian house geckos were collected in a random survey of houses in Townsville, North Queensland. Gut contents underwent microbiological analysis within 2 h of removal using both direct plating and enrichment broth methods. Any organism found to be a presumptive Salmonella spp. was then sent to a reference lab for confirmation of genus/species, serotyping, and phage typing if indicated.

Results: One hundred Asian house geckos were collected from 57 houses. Geckos were present in 100% of houses surveyed, and prevalence of Salmonella in large intestinal contents was 7% (95% confidence interval 2, 12%). Three serotypes were found: Virchow (phage type 8), Weltevreden, and an untypable subspecies 1 serotype 11:-:1,7.

Conclusion: Since Salmonella Virchow (phage type 8) is associated with invasive disease, the introduced Asian house gecko may play a significant role in the epidemiology of sporadic salmonellosis in places invaded by these peridomestic reptiles. These results justify more detailed epidemiological studies on the role of the Asian house gecko in sporadic salmonellosis and development of evidence-based strategies to decrease this potential zoonotic hazard.

Item ID: 20641
Item Type: Article (Refereed Research - C1)
Keywords: Hemidactylus frenatus; House gecko; North Queensland; reptile; salmonella; Salmonella Virchow; Salmonella Weltvreden; zoonosis
ISSN: 1557-7759
Date Deposited: 01 Mar 2012 07:27
FoR Codes: 11 MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES > 1117 Public Health and Health Services > 111705 Environmental and Occupational Health and Safety @ 80%
11 MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES > 1117 Public Health and Health Services > 111706 Epidemiology @ 20%
SEO Codes: 92 HEALTH > 9204 Public Health (excl. Specific Population Health) > 920404 Disease Distribution and Transmission (incl. Surveillance and Response) @ 40%
92 HEALTH > 9204 Public Health (excl. Specific Population Health) > 920499 Public Health (excl. Specific Population Health) not elsewhere classified @ 60%
Citation Count from Web of Science Web of Science 2
Downloads: Total: 1
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