Salmonella weltevreden has been found to be one of the commonest Salmonella serotypes isolated from diverse sources in India and has also been isolated in a number of other countries. A phage typing scheme was developed for this serotype using a set of six typing phages. These phages had been selected out of 146 phage strains isolated and purified from stool samples of man, laboratory animals and other animals, sewage and surface water sources, and the lytic mutants of temperate phages from S. weltevreden.
The phage typing scheme was applied systematically to type the 946 strains from India isolated during 1958–1974 and 148 strains originating from Australia, Burma, England, Gan Island, Holland, Hong Kong, Malaysia, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, The Philippines, Thailand, The United States and Vietnam during 1953–1971. The scheme was particularly studied to evaluate its utility in mapping the epidemiologically related strains from various sources.
The S. weltevreden strains could be classified into ten phage types. Phage types 2 and 7 were found exclusively amongst Indian strains, type 6 from Vietnam and type 8 from Burma, Thailand and Vietnam. Phage types were found to be stable and consistent with the independent epidemiological data available.