Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Challenges, opportunities for reducing antibiotic resistance in agricultural settings

Date:
October 18, 2013
Source:
American Society of Agronomy
Summary:
Antibiotic resistant pathogens are an emerging, critical human health issue. The World Health Organization (WHO) has declared antibiotic resistance as a top health issue worldwide. Two million Americans are infected each year with diseases resistant to known antibiotics; between ten and fifteen thousand die. Interdisciplinary standards are needed for studying antibiotic resistance in agriculture to help rectify its wide-reaching problems.

Antibiotic resistant pathogens are an emerging, critical human health issue. The World Health Organization (WHO) has declared antibiotic resistance as a top health issue worldwide. Two million Americans are infected each year with diseases resistant to known antibiotics; between ten and fifteen thousand die.

Most people equate antibiotic resistance to the medical field. However, antibiotic resistance is also in our soils. And, the field of agriculture has been blamed for making this worse by using concentrated feed operations that leak antibiotics into surrounding waterways. In addition, municipal water treatment systems are unable to filter antibiotics, and are being studied for their impact on the development of resistance in the environment.

However, research shows that antibiotic resistance is a natural occurrence in our soils. Simplistically, bacteria and fungi living in soils have to compete for few food resources. Over millennia, some bacteria and fungi developed the ability to produce antibiotic chemicals in order to kill their competition. Because they produce these antibiotics, they are naturally immune to the effects of their own excretions.

Jean McLain's study in Arizona examined resistance levels to 16 antibiotics in bacteria isolated from riparian soils in a wetland that had been recharged with wastewater for over 30 years. Resistance was very high in isolated bacteria. But, when resistance levels were compared to bacteria isolated from sediments of a nearby pond with no exposure to wastewater, resistance was equally high for 7 of the antibiotics studied. Furthermore, resistance to 5 of the antibiotics found in low levels in the wastewater-treated soils was significantly higher in the soils exposed only to groundwater. This illustrates the need for considering natural, background resistance in soils in any scientific study examining the effects of antibiotics on the environment.

There currently is no set standard on measuring natural antibiotic resistance in soils. Knowing this baseline of antibiotic resistance is necessary for a complete picture of the problem. McLain and her colleagues have written a grant calling for worldwide experts in the field to meet and develop such standards. In her talk at the Annual Meetings, Dr. McLain will describe the various methods that could be used to measure natural background antibiotic resistance in soils and will deliver a "call to action" for all scientists currently studying antibiotic resistance.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Society of Agronomy. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

American Society of Agronomy. "Challenges, opportunities for reducing antibiotic resistance in agricultural settings." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 18 October 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/10/131018132308.htm>.
American Society of Agronomy. (2013, October 18). Challenges, opportunities for reducing antibiotic resistance in agricultural settings. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 26, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/10/131018132308.htm
American Society of Agronomy. "Challenges, opportunities for reducing antibiotic resistance in agricultural settings." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/10/131018132308.htm (accessed July 26, 2014).

Share This




More Plants & Animals News

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

How to Make Single Serving Smoothies: Howdini Hacks

How to Make Single Serving Smoothies: Howdini Hacks

Howdini (July 24, 2014) Smoothies are a great way to get in lots of healthy ingredients, plus they taste great! Howdini has a trick for making the perfect single-size smoothie that will save you time on cleanup too! All you need is a blender and a mason jar. Video provided by Howdini
Powered by NewsLook.com
Boy Attacked by Shark in Florida

Boy Attacked by Shark in Florida

Reuters - US Online Video (July 24, 2014) An 8-year-old boy is bitten in the leg by a shark while vacationing at a Florida beach. Linda So reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Goma Cheese Brings Whiff of New Hope to DRC

Goma Cheese Brings Whiff of New Hope to DRC

Reuters - Business Video Online (July 24, 2014) The eastern region of the Democratic Republic of Congo, mainly known for conflict and instability, is an unlikely place for the production of fine cheese. But a farm in the village of Masisi, in North Kivu is slowly transforming perceptions of the area. Known simply as Goma cheese, the Congolese version of Dutch gouda has gained popularity through out the region. Ciara Sutton reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Tyrannosaur Pack-Hunting Theory Aided By New Footprints

Tyrannosaur Pack-Hunting Theory Aided By New Footprints

Newsy (July 24, 2014) A new study claims a set of prehistoric T-Rex footprints supports the theory that the giant predators hunted in packs instead of alone. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins