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Molecules 2018, 23(4), 795; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules23040795

Antibiotic Use in Agriculture and Its Consequential Resistance in Environmental Sources: Potential Public Health Implications

1
Fort Hare Institute of Technology, University of Fort Hare, Alice Campus, Alice 5700, Eastern Cape, South Africa
2
Applied and Environmental Microbiology Research Group (AEMREG), Department of Biochemistry and Microbiology, University of Fort Hare, Alice Campus, Alice 5700, Eastern Cape, South Africa
3
SAMRC Microbial Water Quality Monitoring Centre, University of Fort Hare, Alice Campus, Alice 5700, Eastern Cape, South Africa
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 16 November 2017 / Revised: 14 February 2018 / Accepted: 2 March 2018 / Published: 30 March 2018
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Abstract

Due to the increased demand of animal protein in developing countries, intensive farming is instigated, which results in antibiotic residues in animal-derived products, and eventually, antibiotic resistance. Antibiotic resistance is of great public health concern because the antibiotic-resistant bacteria associated with the animals may be pathogenic to humans, easily transmitted to humans via food chains, and widely disseminated in the environment via animal wastes. These may cause complicated, untreatable, and prolonged infections in humans, leading to higher healthcare cost and sometimes death. In the said countries, antibiotic resistance is so complex and difficult, due to irrational use of antibiotics both in the clinical and agriculture settings, low socioeconomic status, poor sanitation and hygienic status, as well as that zoonotic bacterial pathogens are not regularly cultured, and their resistance to commonly used antibiotics are scarcely investigated (poor surveillance systems). The challenges that follow are of local, national, regional, and international dimensions, as there are no geographic boundaries to impede the spread of antibiotic resistance. In addition, the information assembled in this study through a thorough review of published findings, emphasized the presence of antibiotics in animal-derived products and the phenomenon of multidrug resistance in environmental samples. This therefore calls for strengthening of regulations that direct antibiotic manufacture, distribution, dispensing, and prescription, hence fostering antibiotic stewardship. Joint collaboration across the world with international bodies is needed to assist the developing countries to implement good surveillance of antibiotic use and antibiotic resistance. View Full-Text
Keywords: antibiotics; agriculture; antibiotic resistance; environmental sources; developing countries antibiotics; agriculture; antibiotic resistance; environmental sources; developing countries
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).
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Manyi-Loh, C.; Mamphweli, S.; Meyer, E.; Okoh, A. Antibiotic Use in Agriculture and Its Consequential Resistance in Environmental Sources: Potential Public Health Implications. Molecules 2018, 23, 795.

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