Antibiotic Resistant Bacteria Found in Soil and Groundwater Surrounding Farms

2023 WordsFeb 21, 20188 Pages
Antibiotic Resistant Bacteria Found in Soil and Groundwater Surrounding Farms Introduction: Beginning in the 1940’s, antimicrobial agents were first implemented as a means of treating bacterial infections in humans (1). By the 1950’s, the usage of these agents had spread to veterinary medicine where they were being used for companion animals as well as animals raised for food (9). It is thought that upwards of 60% of antibiotics in the United States are used to promote growth and prevent disease within livestock. Though antibiotics have profoundly changed the landscape of human medicine, a rapid overuse and abuse has created reservoirs of resistant bacteria (2). A population of organism’s ability to adapt to a changing environment is a natural occurrence, however, antibiotics are expediting this process and potentially creating pathogenic organisms for which there are no effective treatments. In recent years, emergence of resistant bacteria is occurring at a significantly higher rate than the rate of new drugs being discovered (8). Each time an antibiotic is used it creates a “selective pressure” on the microbial community. The bacteria, which are susceptible to the antibiotic treatment, will be killed. This allows for the non-susceptible bacteria to grow without competition, and accordingly become the dominant population (8). Antibiotic resistance in bacteria occurs by two mechanisms. The first mechanism is a rare mutation in the genome, which allows the cell to

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