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Risk factors for ceftiofur resistance in Escherichia coli from Belgian broilers

  • D. PERSOONS (a1) (a2), F. HAESEBROUCK (a3), A. SMET (a3), L. HERMAN (a2), M. HEYNDRICKX (a2), A. MARTEL (a3), B. CATRY (a4), A. C. BERGE (a1), P. BUTAYE (a3) (a5) and J. DEWULF (a1)...


A cross-sectional study on 32 different Belgian broiler farms was performed in 2007 and 2008 to identify risk factors for ceftiofur resistance in Escherichia coli. On each farm, one E. coli colony was isolated from 30 random birds. Following susceptibility testing of 14 antimicrobials, an on-farm questionnaire was used to obtain information on risk factors. Using a multilevel logistic regression model two factors were identified at the animal level: resistance to amoxicillin and to trimethoprim–sulfonamide. On the farm level, besides antimicrobial use, seven management factors were found to be associated with the occurrence of ceftiofur resistance in E. coli from broilers: poor hygienic condition of the medicinal treatment reservoir, no acidification of drinking water, more than three feed changes during the production cycle, hatchery of origin, breed, litter material used, and treatment with amoxicillin. This study confirms that not only on-farm antimicrobial therapy, but also management- and hatchery-related factors influence the occurrence of antimicrobial resistance.

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Corresponding author

*Author for correspondence: Mr D. Persoons, Salisburylaan 133, 9820 Merelbeke, Belgium. (Email:


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Epidemiology & Infection
  • ISSN: 0950-2688
  • EISSN: 1469-4409
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