The survival times of Mycoplasma gallisepticum
(Mg) and Mycoplasma synoviae (Ms) on
washed and unwashed natural and synthetic kanekalon
hair samples over a 5-d period were evaluated using the
color changing unit method for comparison with results
of previous studies conducted on natural hair. Regardless
of whether synthetic or natural hair samples prewashed
with a disinfectant shampoo were spiked with
Mg or Ms, all viable organisms rapidly dropped below a
count of 1 × 101/mL of culture. unwashed natural hair
seeded with a titer of approximately 1 × 106/mL of viable
Mg or Ms decreased to 6 × 105/mL and 6 × 103/
mL, respectively, by 4 h postseeding, but no viable Mg
or Ms were detected on natural hair from 8 h onwards.
By contrast, the titers of Mg and Ms on synthetic hair
did not decline from the initial 1 × 106/mL seed dose
up to 96 h postseeding, and, in fact, viable Mg and Ms
was still detectable at 9 d postinfection. Application of
a real-time quantitative single-tube duplex PCR assay
confirmed that no proliferation of Mg or Ms had occurred
on the synthetic hair samples, the cells simply
remained viable. The unexpected finding that Mg and
Ms survive for extended periods on synthetic kanekalon
hair fibers raises the question of whether attachment
to a surface is a prerequisite for the survival and persistence
of Mg and Ms in the extra-host environment.
Future studies should be aimed at determining whether
other synthetic hair types or indeed other types of plastics
commonly found in the poultry house offer similar
survival advantages to mycoplasmas.
Le Roux, Marie C.; Hoosen, Anwar Ahmed(Federation of Infectious Diseases Societies of South Africa, 2010-06)
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