Identifying the seasonal origins of human campylobacteriosis

N. J.C. Strachan, O. Rotariu, A. Smith-Palmer, J. Cowden, S. K. Sheppard, S. J. O'Brien, M. C.J. Maiden, M. MacRae, P. R. Bessell, L. Matthews, S. W.J. Reid, G. T. Innocent, I. D. Ogden, K. J. Forbes

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32 Citations (SciVal)


Human campylobacteriosis exhibits a distinctive seasonality in temperate regions. This paper aims to identify the origins of this seasonality. Clinical isolates [typed by multi-locus sequence typing (MLST)] and epidemiological data were collected from Scotland. Young rural children were found to have an increased burden of disease in the late spring due to strains of non-chicken origin (e.g. ruminant and wild bird strains from environmental sources). In contrast the adult population had an extended summer peak associated with chicken strains. Travel abroad and UK mainland travel were associated with up to 17% and 18% of cases, respectively. International strains were associated with chicken, had a higher diversity than indigenous strains and a different spectrum of MLST types representative of these countries. Integrating empirical epidemiology and molecular subtyping can successfully elucidate the seasonal components of human campylobacteriosis. The findings will enable public health officials to focus strategies to reduce the disease burden.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1267-1275
Number of pages9
JournalEpidemiology and Infection
Issue number6
Early online date19 Sept 2012
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2013


  • Bacterial typing
  • Campylobacter
  • foodborne zoonoses
  • modelling
  • molecular epidemiology

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Epidemiology
  • Infectious Diseases


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