Staphylococcus aureus incidence in Egyptian meat outlets and butcheries, and their biofilm, antibiotic-resistance, and virulence capabilities

Document Type : Original Article


1 Department of Food Hygiene and Control, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Benha University,

2 Animal Health Research Institute, Shibin El Kom, Menofia, Egypt.


The goal of the study was to identify the frequency of Staphylococcus aureus, as well as their virulence and biofilm-forming characteristics, in meat-contact and equipment surfaces at selling outlets, butcher shops, and supermarkets in Al-Menofia governorate, Egypt. A total of 100 swabs (50 from butcher shops and 50 from supermarkets) were collected to meet these objectives from ten butcher shops and ten supermarkets. Standard culture procedures, the VITEK2 compact system, and PCR techniques were all used to isolate and identify the targeted pathogens. The genetic elements that support virulence and biofilm development features were examined using PCR. Staphylococcus aureus was identified in 25% of the swabbed samples. Butchers had a higher detection rate of S. aureus than supermarkets (30% vs. 20%) (P > 0.05). All five S. aureus isolates had the icaD and pyrogenic exotoxin genes, whereas three shared the icaA and two of the three carried the mecA resistance gene. Strong virulence (pyrogenic exotoxin genes and mecA resistance gene) and a high incidence of biofilm-producing components in S. aureus isolated from meat-contact and equipment surfaces suggest poor hygiene of investigated selling outlets, and butcher shops, which can be attributed to either ineffective or absence of cleaning and disinfection program. This calls for more strict control from Egyptian food safety authorities because otherwise, such serious pathogens might pose concerns.


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