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Flies may spread drug-resistant bacteria from poultry operations
Date:3/16/2009

ylococci bacteria from both flies and litter. The bacteria isolated from flies had very similar resistance characteristics and resistance genes to bacteria found in the poultry litter.

Flies have ready access to both stored poultry waste and to poultry houses. A study by researchers in Denmark estimated that as many as 30,000 flies could enter a poultry house over the course of six week period.

Additional authors of "Antibiotic-resistant enterococci and staphylococci isolated from flies collected near confined poultry feeding operations" are Lance Price, Sean Evans and Thaddeaus Graczyk. The study is published in the April 2009 issue of Science of the Total Environment.

The research was funded by a grant from the Johns Hopkins Center for a Livable Future.

According to Robert Lawrence, MD, director of the Center for a Livable Future, confined animal feeding operationswhere thousands of animals are crowded together and are fed antibiotics for growth promotioncreate the perfect environment for selection of bacteria that are resistant to antibiotics. "Antimicrobials are among the most important developments of the twentieth century in managing infectious diseases in people. We can't afford to squander them by using them as growth promoters in industrial food animal production. The increase in antibiotic-resistant bacteria is a major threat to the health of the public, and policymakers should quickly phase out and ban the use of antimicrobials for non-therapeutic use in food animal production," said Lawrence.


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Contact: Tim Parsons
tmparson@jhsph.edu
410-955-7619
Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health
Source:Eurekalert

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