When most people think about bacterial antibiotic resistance, they think about it occurring in bacteria found in people or animals. But the environment surrounding us is a huge bacterial reservoir, and antibiotic resistance can be passed between bacteria in the environment, including in the soil.
Sid Thakur is an associate professor of population health and pathobiology at the College of Veterinary Medicine and associate director of the Comparative Medicine Institute at NC State. He studies antibiotic resistance and how it can persist and spread among food animals, humans and the environment they all share. Recently, Thakur found that spreading manure on the ground as fertilizer can also spread antibiotic resistance to bacteria in the soil.
This study was made using non composted manures, thus the pathogenic bacteria were not killed off, thus his results.
This is important to understand because what Professor Thakur studied was the current methods many farms are using for incorporation of manure.
The study is good (repeatable) and points out the dangers of using non composted manures and it provides a window that is one explanation for some of the food recalls for contamination over the past few years.
Most of the manure used today is "aged" instead of hot composted, this actually can grow pathogenic bacteria which then, when spread, can result it the increased antibiotic resistant strains which can then infect plants and then people who eat those plants.
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