This thesis describes an investigation of some factors affecting attachment of salmonellae and Escherichia coli to collagen fibres of poultry breast muscle fascie. Direct microscopic techniques were used in conjunction with standard microbiological methods as a means of examining the attachment process.
All strains of salmonellae tested, fimbriate Escherichia coli and a strain of Campylobacter coli adhered to collagen when muscle fascie was immersed in water containing cells of the appropriate test culture. Adhesion was dependent on water induced changes in fascie structure and was inhibited or reversed by addition of sodium chloride to the suspending medium. Capsular glycocalyx also prevented attachment of these bacteria to collagen fibres.
TEM studies indicated attached cells were held to the collagen by acidic mucopolysaccharides (or glycosaminoglycans) associated with the intercollagen fibre matrix of fascie. Subsequent studies showed hyaluronic acid (a predominant glycosaminoglycan associated with collagenous tissue) could inhibit attachment of selected strains of Salmonella and E. coli, but this ingibition could be reversed by hyaluronidase. Chondroitin-sulphate, a related glycosaminoglycan, only inhibited attachment of E. coli strains. This evidence implicated hyaluronate as a key factor in the attachment process.
Since only fimbriate E. coli could bind significant amounts of hyaluronic acid, it is usggested these bacteria may bind directly to tissue glyclsaminoglycans. Salmonellae, however, apparently require an additional bridging compoung (possibly a protein) to mediate adhesion to collagen fibres.