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Open AccessArticle

Antibiotic Resistance Genes in Phage Particles from Antarctic and Mediterranean Seawater Ecosystems

1
Department of Genetics, Microbiology and Statistics, University of Barcelona, Diagonal 643, Annex, Floor 0, 08028 Barcelona, Spain
2
Department of Evolutionary Biology, Ecology and Environmental Sciences (BEECA), Faculty of Biology, and Biodiversity Research Institute (IrBIO), University of Barcelona, Diagonal 643, 08028 Barcelona, Spain
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Microorganisms 2020, 8(9), 1293; https://doi.org/10.3390/microorganisms8091293
Received: 29 July 2020 / Revised: 15 August 2020 / Accepted: 19 August 2020 / Published: 24 August 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Understanding Phage Particles)
Anthropogenic activities are a key factor in the development of antibiotic resistance in bacteria, a growing problem worldwide. Nevertheless, antibiotics and resistances were being generated by bacterial communities long before their discovery by humankind, and might occur in areas without human influence. Bacteriophages are known to play a relevant role in the dissemination of antibiotic resistance genes (ARGs) in aquatic environments. In this study, five ARGs (blaTEM, blaCTX-M-1, blaCTX-M-9, sul1 and tetW) were monitored in phage particles isolated from seawater of two different locations: (i) the Mediterranean coast, subjected to high anthropogenic pressure, and (ii) the Antarctic coast, where the anthropogenic impact is low. Although found in lower quantities, ARG-containing phage particles were more prevalent among the Antarctic than the Mediterranean seawater samples and Antarctic bacterial communities were confirmed as their source. In the Mediterranean area, ARG-containing phages from anthropogenic fecal pollution might allow ARG transmission through the food chain. ARGs were detected in phage particles isolated from fish (Mediterranean, Atlantic, farmed, and frozen), the most abundant being β-lactamases. Some of these particles were infectious in cultures of the fecal bacteria Escherichia coli. By serving as ARG reservoirs in marine environments, including those with low human activity, such as the Antarctic, phages could contribute to ARG transmission between bacterial communities. View Full-Text
Keywords: bacteriophages; shellfish; fish; transduction; ARG; horizontal gene transfer bacteriophages; shellfish; fish; transduction; ARG; horizontal gene transfer
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MDPI and ACS Style

Blanco-Picazo, P.; Roscales, G.; Toribio-Avedillo, D.; Gómez-Gómez, C.; Avila, C.; Ballesté, E.; Muniesa, M.; Rodríguez-Rubio, L. Antibiotic Resistance Genes in Phage Particles from Antarctic and Mediterranean Seawater Ecosystems. Microorganisms 2020, 8, 1293. https://doi.org/10.3390/microorganisms8091293

AMA Style

Blanco-Picazo P, Roscales G, Toribio-Avedillo D, Gómez-Gómez C, Avila C, Ballesté E, Muniesa M, Rodríguez-Rubio L. Antibiotic Resistance Genes in Phage Particles from Antarctic and Mediterranean Seawater Ecosystems. Microorganisms. 2020; 8(9):1293. https://doi.org/10.3390/microorganisms8091293

Chicago/Turabian Style

Blanco-Picazo, Pedro; Roscales, Gabriel; Toribio-Avedillo, Daniel; Gómez-Gómez, Clara; Avila, Conxita; Ballesté, Elisenda; Muniesa, Maite; Rodríguez-Rubio, Lorena. 2020. "Antibiotic Resistance Genes in Phage Particles from Antarctic and Mediterranean Seawater Ecosystems" Microorganisms 8, no. 9: 1293. https://doi.org/10.3390/microorganisms8091293

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