Milk Microbiome and antimicrobial resistance associated with sub clinical and clinical mastitis in dairy cattle in Kenya.


Consortium for Advanced Research Training in Africa (CARTA)

Principle Instigator
Dr. Christine M. Mbindyo

Bovine mastitis remains one of most significant disease in the dairy industry globally with both economic and public health importance. Mastitis is also the main reason for use of antibiotics in dairy cows. Studies have shown that about 80% of antibiotics used in the dairy cows are for treatment and control of mastitis.

There are limited studies that have investigated culturable and non-culturable organisms of bovine clinical and subclinical mastitis, their genetic and antimicrobial resistance diversity in dairy cows in Kenya. This is despite the high prevalence of the disease and increasing antibiotic resistance associated with the treatment of mastitis in cows worldwide. The prevalence of mastitis in Kenya remains high (>50%) and more than 140 pathogens have been identified as causative agents of mastitis globally. However, previous research in Kenya using culture methods only managed to identify 6 of them. Further evidence has shown that the routine culture method which is the gold standard for diagnosis of mastitis remains inadequate and fails to identify bacteria in about 30% clinical and subclinical mastitic cases. Moreover, some of these bacteria are zoonotic and have the potential to cause public health risk since they can transmit fatal diseases in humans. This is coupled with the increasing rate of antibiotic resistance emanating from cows as a result of indiscriminate use of antibiotics in the treatment of mastitis. Therefore, this study will investigate the microbial diversity of mastitic milk, antimicrobial resistance profiles and associated risk factors in dairy cows in Kenya in order to improve mastitis therapy and control emergence and the spread of AMR in Kenyan Dairy.