Acinetobacter baumannii detected on modified charcoal–cefoperazone–deoxycholate agar in a waste stabilization pond

Maxim Sheludchenko, Anna Padovan, Mohammad Katouli, Helen Stratton

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Campylobacter is a recommended reference pathogen for the verification and validation of water recycling schemes in Australia and globally. In a larger study investigating the efficacy of pathogen removal in waste stabilization ponds (WSP), we cultivated bacteria from wastewater samples on modified charcoal– cefoperazone–deoxycholate agar (mCCDA) targeting the growth of Campylobacter. A high number of colonies characteristic of Campylobacter grew on this selective medium, but this did not correlate with qPCR data. Using primers targeting the 16S rRNA gene, and additional confirmatory tests to detect VS1, ompA, blaOXA-51-like, blaOXA-23-like genes, we tested 80 random colonies from 10 WSP samples. All 80 were identified as Acinetobacter baumannii. Wastewater grab samples taken three times over 6 months throughout the WSP system showed removal of A. baumannii in the WSP at rates similar to that of Escherichia coli. Our study suggests that mCCDA agar is not a suitable medium for isolating Campylobacter from environmental samples and that A. baumannii can be used as an indicator for removal of pathogens in WSPs.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)206-213
Number of pages8
JournalCanadian Journal of Microbiology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2020
Externally publishedYes


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