Do antibiotic residues in soils play a role in amplification and transmission of antibiotic resistant bacteria in cattle populations?

Call, D.R., Matthews, L. , Subbiah, M. and Liu, J. (2013) Do antibiotic residues in soils play a role in amplification and transmission of antibiotic resistant bacteria in cattle populations? Frontiers in Microbiology, 4(193), pp. 1-8. (doi:10.3389/fmicb.2013.00193)

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Abstract

When we consider factors that contribute to the emergence, amplification, and persistence of antibiotic resistant bacteria, the conventional assumption is that antibiotic use is the primary driver in these processes and that selection occurs primarily in the patient or animal. Evidence suggests that this may not always be the case. Experimental trials show that parenteral administration of a third-generation cephalosporin (ceftiofur) in cattle has limited or short-term effects on the prevalence of ceftiofur-resistant bacteria in the gastrointestinal tract. While this response may be sufficient to explain a pattern of widespread resistance to cephalosporins, approximately two-thirds of ceftiofur metabolites are excreted in the urine raising the possibility that environmental selection plays an important additive role in the amplification and maintenance of antibiotic resistant E. coli on farms. Consequently, we present a rationale for an environmental selection hypothesis whereby excreted antibiotic residues such as ceftiofur are a significant contributor to the proliferation of antibiotic resistant bacteria in food animal systems. We also present a mathematical model of our hypothesized system as a guide for designing experiments to test this hypothesis. If supported for antibiotics such as ceftiofur, then there may be new approaches to combat the proliferation of antibiotic resistance beyond the prudent use mantra.

Item Type:Articles
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Matthews, Professor Louise
Authors: Call, D.R., Matthews, L., Subbiah, M., and Liu, J.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > Institute of Biodiversity Animal Health and Comparative Medicine
Journal Name:Frontiers in Microbiology
ISSN:1664-302X
ISSN (Online):1664-302X

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