Current Microbiology

, Volume 75, Issue 1, pp 71–78 | Cite as

A Comparative Evaluation Study of Growth Conditions for Culturing the Isolates of Campylobacter spp.

  • Ying-Hsin Hsieh
  • Steven Simpson
  • Khalil Kerdahi
  • Irshad M. Sulaiman


Campylobacter is one of the leading causes of foodborne travelers’ diarrhea worldwide. Although a large number cases of campylobacteriosis go undiagnosed or unreported, it is considered as the second most common foodborne illness in the USA affecting over 1.3 million individuals every year. Of various Campylobacter species, C. jejuni, C. coli, and C. lari have been accounted for causing more than 99% of human infections. Thus, there is a need to have efficient isolation method to protect public health on food safety and monitoring the burden of campylobacteriosis. Nevertheless, it is a challenging task as the exposure of environmental stress during isolation process makes Campylobacter species less culturable. Sixteen Campylobacter spp. were used to evaluate the current protocols used in Campylobacter isolation. For optimal recovery, a range of growth media (Bolton, Columbia, Muller Hinton, CVA Campy and mCCDA), incubation temperatures, and additional supplements (including antibiotics) were tested. Blood agars without antibiotics were sufficient for the initial recovery. Afterward, the isolates could grow on agars without any supplements, and in some cases growth was observed in the presence of antibiotics. Incubation at 37 °C was found to be the optimal temperature for the recovery and the growth of most species. Additionally, a food adulteration study was also carried out by artificially contaminating three food matrices that included egg, milk, and infant cereal, with two isolates of C. jejuni and C. coli. Results of this study should provide the insight for culturing and isolation of Campylobacter from food and other sources.



This study was supported by funding from the FDA Commissioner’s Fellowship Program. The funders had no role in the study design, data collection and analysis, decision to publish, or preparation of the manuscript.


The findings and conclusions made in this manuscript are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the views or official position of U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) or U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS). The names of vendors or manufacturers are provided as examples of available product sources; inclusion does not imply endorsement of the vendors, manufacturers, or products by FDA or DHHS.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York (outside the USA) 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ying-Hsin Hsieh
    • 1
  • Steven Simpson
    • 1
  • Khalil Kerdahi
    • 1
  • Irshad M. Sulaiman
    • 1
  1. 1.Microbiological Sciences Branch, Southeast Food and Feed LaboratoryU.S. Food and Drug AdministrationAtlantaUSA

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