Biology and Control of Campylobacter in the Chicken Supply Chain (CamChain)

CamChain Group members at a conference

Our work is part of an EMIDA ERA-NET project entitled Biology and Control of Campylobacter in the Chicken Supply Chain (CamChain).  We comprise groups in Europe and Thailand and our work packages (WP) will address knowledge gaps on the behaviour of Campylobacter in the poultry chain. Dr Nicola Williams is the Co-Ordinator for this project, and is joined at Liverpool by Dr Paul Wigley and Dr Elli Wright.  Partnered in this project are:

University of Liverpool, UK

Lead:  Dr Nicola Williams, with Dr Paul Wigley, Dr Elli Wright

LUHS, Lithuania

Lead: Dr Mindaugas Malakauskas

University of Cambridge, UK

Lead: Professor Duncan Maskell with Dr Andrew Grant, Dr Andrew Conlan, Dr Stefan de Vries,

University of Helsinki, Finland

Lead: Dr Marja-liisa Hanninen with Ann-Katrin Larena

AGES, Austria

Lead: Dr Monika Matt with Dr Hans Peter Stueger

Istituto Zooprofilattico dell'Abruzzo e del Molise (IZSAM), Italy

Lead: Dr Elisabetta Di Giannatale with Dr Diana di Gioia, Dr Paolo Calistri, Dr Guilliano Garofolo

Anses, France

Lead: Dr Marianne Chemaly with Dr Adeline Huneau, Dr Katell Rivoal, Dr Muriel Guyard

Technical University of Denmark, Denmark

Lead: Dr Birthe Hald with Dr Annette Nygaard Jensen, Dr Steen Nordentoft, Dr Karl Pedersen

Vetmedi Vienna, Vienna University, Austria

Lead: Dr Friederike Hilbert with Dr Frans Smulders, Dr Peter Paulsen


Our specific hypotheses are:

  • Campylobacter has specific mechanisms to infect the broiler gut and spread to edible tissues.

  • Flies, rodents and wild birds play an important role in the survival of Campylobacter and its transmission to  broilers.

  • Campylobacter has mechanisms that enable it to adapt to and survive in the environment, and interaction with other microbes enhances this.

  • Environmental exposure alters Campylobacter population biology and their infection potential.

  • Pre- or probiotics improve broiler gut health and enhance resistance to Campylobacter.

WP1: Interactions of Campylobacter and broilers with the environment (UK, Austria, Lithuania, Finland, Italy)

WP2: Insect vectors for Campylobacter Transmission (UK, Denmark and Austria)

WP3: Campylobacter reduction from farm to slaughter (UK, Denmark, Austria, Italy and France)

WP4: Modelling Campylobacter survival from the environment to slaughter (all partners)

WP5: Intervention options and control tools: a guide to good practice (all partners)

In summary, our work packages are holistic, broad-ranging but integrated (Figure).  The aim of these work packages are to better understand the behaviour of Campylobacter in poultry production, to understand the interactions between Campylobacter, the production environment and the chicken, in order to improve control mechanisms.

 CamChain Diagram