Antibiotic Resistance Found in Birds, Wildlife, and Livestock
Friday, November 08, 2013
Antibiotic Resistance Spreading in the Environment
Antibiotic resistant pathogens have been found in crows, gulls,houseflies, moths, frogs, foxes, harks, and whales as well as in sand and samples of water off the coasts of California and the state of Washington. "We've documented human-derived drug resistance where it shouldn't be—in wildlife and the environment,” said Julie Ellis a researcher at Tufts University's veterinary school, who discovered genes for antibiotic resistance in crow droppings. Disturbingly, 2.5 percent of samples from crows in Massachusetts, Kansas, New York and California, showed resistance to vancomycin, a drug of last resort for hard to treat healthcare acquired infections. Read the story in Scientific merican by Lindsey Konkel and Environmental Health News.
A story in The Scientist by Beth Marie Mole reported that researchers at the Wildlife Care Clinic at Iowa State University in Ames found MRSA bacteria several wild animals, including rabbits, owls, beaver, a heron,and a squirrel. The study appeared in the Journal of Wildlife Diseases. Genetic esting indicated that the bird's MRSA strain was similar to that of hospital-derived drug-resistant bugs, while the rabbits carried strains from other human-derived sources, such as farms. Though tracing MRSA through the environment is technically difficult, many scientists speculate that drug-resistant germs from farms or clinics could spread through sewage, water runoff, or trash.