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Survival Of Escherichia Coli O157:H7 In Soils From Jiangsu Province, China

T. Zhang, H. Wang, L. Wu, J. Lou, J. Wu, P. Brookes, J. Xu
Published 2013 · Biology, Medicine

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Escherichia coli O157:H7 (E. coli O157:H7) is recognized as a hazardous microorganism in the environment and for public health. The E. coli O157:H7 survival dynamics were investigated in 12 representative soils from Jiangsu Province, where the largest E. coli O157:H7 infection in China occurred. It was observed that E. coli O157:H7 declined rapidly in acidic soils (pH, 4.57 – 5.14) but slowly in neutral soils (pH, 6.51 – 7.39). The survival dynamics were well described by the Weibull model, with the calculated td value (survival time of the culturable E. coli O157:H7 needed to reach the detection limit of 100 CFU g−1) from 4.57 days in an acidic soil (pH, 4.57) to 34.34 days in a neutral soil (pH, 6.77). Stepwise multiple regression analysis indicated that soil pH and soil organic carbon favored E. coli O157:H7 survival, while a high initial ratio of Gram-negative bacteria phospholipid fatty acids (PLFAs) to Gram-positive bacteria PLFAs, and high content of exchangeable potassium inhibited E. coli O157:H7 survival. Principal component analysis clearly showed that the survival profiles in soils with high pH were different from those with low pH.
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