Navigation Links
Study finds antibiotic resistance in poultry even when antibiotics were not used

A surprising finding by a team of University of Georgia scientists suggests that curbing the use of antibiotics on poultry farms will do little ?if anything ?to reduce rates of antibiotic resistant bacteria that have the potential to threaten human health.

Dr. Margie Lee, professor in the UGA College of Veterinary Medicine, and her colleagues have found that chickens raised on antibiotic-free farms and even those raised under pristine laboratory conditions have high levels of bacteria that are resistant to common antibiotics. Her findings, published in the March issue of the journal Applied and Environmental Microbiology, suggest that poultry come to the farm harboring resistant bacteria, possibly acquired as they were developing in their eggs.

"The resistances don't necessarily come from antibiotic use in the birds that we eat," Lee said, "so banning antibiotic use on the farm isn't going to help. You have to put in some work before that."

Lee and her team sampled droppings from more than 140,000 birds under four different conditions: 1.) commercial flocks that had been given antibiotics; 2.) commercial flocks that had not been given antibiotics; 3.) flocks raised in a lab that had been given antibiotics; and 4.) flocks raised in a lab that had not been given antibiotics. The researchers examined levels of antibiotic resistance in normal intestinal bacteria that do not cause human illness and ?in a companion study published in May in the same journal ?also examined levels of drug resistant campylobacter bacteria, a common foodborne cause of diarrhea, cramping and abdominal pain.

They found that even birds raised in the pristine laboratory conditions had levels of antibiotic resistance levels comparable to what was seen on farms that used antibiotics. Even when the levels were lower, Lee adds, they were still well above the reasonable comfort zone for antibiotic resistance ?roughly five to 10 percent.

Seventy-three per cent of the bacteria from one flock in the antibiotic-free commercial group were resistant to the drug oxytetracycline, for example, while 90 percent were resistant to the drug in a commercial flock that used antibiotics. Ninety-seven percent were resistant in the experimental flock that was given antibiotics, while forty-seven percent were resistant in the experimental group that was not given antibiotics.

Strikingly, they even found bacteria resistant to streptomycin, a common human antibiotic that is rarely used in poultry and was not used on the farms the researchers studied.

Bacteria swap genes relatively easily, and Lee explained that the concern is that drug resistance genes from bacteria that infect poultry could be passed on to bacteria that cause human illness. With these resistance genes, human bacterial illness could become harder to treat.

These concerns led the European Union to ban the use of antibiotics for growth promotion in chickens in 2006. In 2005, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration banned the use of the drug Baytril ?the brand name for enrofloxacin, a fluoroquinolone antibiotic ?in poultry, citing concerns that it could lead to resistance in human antibiotics such as Cipro, also a fluoroquinolone.

Several advocacy groups are pushing for a more comprehensive animal antibiotic ban in the United States, but Lee said her research plus the evidence from the Baytril ban suggests that approach won't help.

"They banned Baytril in 2005, and if you look at Baytril resistance in campylobacter now it's essentially unchanged," Lee said.

In previous studies, Lee has tried to recreate experimentally conditions that should lead to the swapping of resistance genes among bacteria. Lee said these events ?known as the horizontal transfer of genes ?do occur, but they may not be as common as initially thought.

What may be driving the antibiotic resistance that Lee has observed in her studi es is what's known as vertical transfer ?from parent to child ?of bacteria carrying resistance genes. In short, the birds may come to the farm harboring antibiotic resistant bacteria.

"This issue of antibiotic resistance is more complicated than once thought," Lee said. "These findings suggest that banning antibiotics at the farm level may not be as effective as assumed. We need further studies to identify which management practice would be effective"

Lee stresses that for consumers, the advice on poultry is the same that it's always been. Cook meat thoroughly and use proper food handling and preparation techniques ?washing your hands regularly and keeping other foods away from raw chicken, for example ?to minimize the risk of illness.

"All foods have the potential to contain pathogens ?all of them," Lee said. "There's no substitute for good food handling and preparation."


'"/>

Source:University of Georgia


Related biology news :

1. Novel Asthma Study Shows Multiple Genetic Input Required; Single-gene Solution Shot Down
2. Emory Study Tests Bone Marrow Stem Cells to Improve Circulation in Legs
3. UCLA Study Shows One-Third of Drug Ads in Medical Journals Do Not Contain References Supporting Medical Claims
4. Study Demonstrates Gene Expression Microarrays are Comparable and Reproducible
5. Study Links Ebola Outbreaks To Animal Carcasses
6. Breakthrough Microarray-based Technology for the Study of Cancer
7. NYU Study Reveals How Brains Immune System Fights Viral Encephalitis
8. Study finds more than one-third of human genome regulated by RNA
9. Leukemia Drug Breakthrough Study In New England Journal Of Medicine
10. Study identifies predictors of HIV drug resistance in patients beginning triple therapy
11. New Study from Affymetrix Laboratories Points to Changing View of How Genome Works
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:12/7/2016)... BioCatch , the global leader in behavioral biometrics, reported a ... over 40 granted and pending patents. ... , The Company,s IP portfolio expansion ... Device, and Method Estimating Force Applied to a Touch Surface, " ... components needed to estimate the force and pressure applied to touch surfaces ...
(Date:12/6/2016)... 6, 2016  Zimmer Biomet Holdings, Inc. (NYSE and SIX: ... offering of €500.0 million principal amount of its 1.414% senior ... its 2.425% senior unsecured notes due 2026. ... December 13, 2016, subject to the satisfaction of customary closing conditions.  ... The Company intends to use the ...
(Date:12/5/2016)... 5, 2016  The Office of Justice Programs, ... CT Scans Enhance or Replace Medico Legal Autopsies?" ... supporting or replacing forensic autopsies with postmortem X-ray ... In response to recommendations made by The ... CT scans as a potential component of medicolegal ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:12/8/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... December 08, 2016 , ... ... data bioInformatics portal. In response to client demand KbioBox developed a sophisticated “3 ... biodesign program. Both are accessible from KBioBox’s new website, https://www.kbiobox.com/ ...
(Date:12/8/2016)... ... December 08, 2016 , ... This CAST literature review and ... crops. The authors focus on the economic effects in countries that are major global ... biotech crops and the resultant risk of low level presence (LLP) puts large volumes ...
(Date:12/8/2016)...  HedgePath Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (OTCQX: HPPI), a clinical ... to commercialize innovative therapeutics for patients with cancer, ... approved for trading on the OTCQX U.S. market. ... effective today, under the ticker symbol "HPPI." ... must meet high financial standards, follow best practice ...
(Date:12/8/2016)... 2016  Partnering to fuel Philadelphia,s ... of Southeastern Pennsylvania (" Ben ... of Independence Blue Cross; and Safeguard Scientifics ("Safeguard") (NYSE: ... a $6 million funding initiative over a four year ... Responding to a burgeoning economic vitality in digital health, ...
Breaking Biology Technology: