Study Points to One Health Approach to Salmonella Control

CANADA - Researchers have concluded that taking a 'One Health' approach to foodborne diseases is the best way to understand the illnesses and develop solutions.
calendar icon 26 June 2013
clock icon 3 minute read

Most bacterial pathogens associated with human enteric illness have zoonotic origins and can be transmitted directly from animals to people or indirectly through food and water. This multitude of potential exposure routes and sources makes the epidemiology of these infectious agents complex.

To better understand these illnesses and identify solutions to reduce human disease, an integrative approach like One Health is needed.

Elizabeth Jane Parmley of Public Health Agency of Canada in Guelph and co-authors have considered the issue of Salmonella in Canada and interpreted data collected by several Canadian surveillance and research programmes.

In a paper in Foodborne Pathogens and Disease, they describe recovery of Salmonella from various samples collected along the exposure pathway and compare the serovars detected in the different components under surveillance (animal, food, environment and human).

They then present three examples to illustrate how an approach that interprets multiple sources of surveillance data together is able to address issues that transcend multiple departments and jurisdictions.

First, they report, differences observed in recovery of Salmonella from different cuts of fresh chicken collected by different programs emphasise the importance of considering the surveillance objectives and how they may influence the information that is generated.

Secondly, they highlight that the high number of Salmonella Enteritidis cases in Canada can be used to illustrate the importance of ongoing, concurrent surveillance of human cases and exposure sources to information domestic control and prevention strategies.

Finally, they found that changing patterns in the occurrence of ceftiofur-resistant Salmonella Heidelberg in retail meats and humans demonstrates how integrated surveillance can identify an issue in an exposure source and link it to a trend in human disease.

Taken together, surveillance models that encompass different scales can leverage infrastructure, costs and benefits and generate a multidimensional picture that can better inform disease prevention and control programmes.


Parmley E.J., K. Pintar, S. Majowicz, B. Avery, A. Cook, C. Jokinen, V. Gannon, D.R. Lapen, E. Topp, T.A. Edge, M. Gilmour, F. Pollari, R. Reid-Smith and R. Irwin. A Canadian Application of One Health: Integration of Salmonella Data from Various Canadian Surveillance Programs (2005–2010). Foodborne Pathogens and Disease. ahead of print. doi:10.1089/fpd.2012.1438

Further Reading

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