Study identifies resistant microbes in food samples


A new study in India has found bacteria resistant to the most powerful antibiotic in fresh food samples such as chicken, fish and vegetables. 


Experts from Apollo Cancer Institute, Chennai and CMC Vellore, have deciphered the mechanism by which a gene responsible for making disease-causing bacteria resistant to powerful antibacterial drugs can get transmitted to humans.


During the first study, the research group reported that the presence of colistin-resistant bacteria was very high in food samples (chicken, fish, meat, vegetables) collected from households, markets and fish and meat outlets. Out of 110 food samples collected in Chennai and analyzed, 46 per cent grew colistin-resistant bacteria like E.coli, Enterobacter spp. and Klebsiella spp.


According to the researchers, if food bacteria resistant to colistin but sensitive to other antibiotics enter gut, multiply and then mix up their genetic elements with gut bacteria resistant to all antibiotics except colistin, then it can give rise to bacteria resistant to all antibiotics including carbapenem and colistin. 

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