Original Paper

Polar Biology

, Volume 30, Issue 10, pp 1227-1229

First online:

Enteropathogenic Escherichia coli (EPEC) in Antarctic fur seals Arctocephalus gazella

  • Jorge HernandezAffiliated withSection for Zoonotic Ecology and Epidemiology, Department of Biology and Environmental Science, University of Kalmar Email author 
  • , Valeria PradoAffiliated withPrograma de Microbiologia, Instituto de Ciencias Biomedicas, Facultad de Medicina, Universidad de Chile
  • , Daniel TorresAffiliated withDepartamento Científico, Instituto Antártico Chileno
  • , Jonas WaldenströmAffiliated withSection for Zoonotic Ecology and Epidemiology, Department of Biology and Environmental Science, University of KalmarDepartment of Animal Ecology, Lund University
  • , Paul D. HaemigAffiliated withSection for Zoonotic Ecology and Epidemiology, Department of Biology and Environmental Science, University of Kalmar
  • , Björn OlsenAffiliated withSection for Zoonotic Ecology and Epidemiology, Department of Biology and Environmental Science, University of KalmarSection of Infectious Diseases, Department of Medical Sciences, Uppsala University Hospital

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Abstract

Rectal swabs were collected from Antarctic fur seal pups Arctocephalus gazella at Cape Shirreff, South Shetland Islands, and analyzed for the presence of anthropogenic pathogens. Two of the 33 pups tested positive for enteropathogenic Escherichia coli (EPEC). These samples are the first records of EPEC in Antarctic wildlife and suggest that more needs to be done to protect the Antarctic fauna from exotic anthropogenic pathogens.