Special Issue "Antimicrobial-Resistance of Food-Borne Pathogens"

A special issue of Antibiotics (ISSN 2079-6382).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (30 September 2020).

Special Issue Editor

Dr. Pierluigi Di Ciccio
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Veterinary Science, University of Turin, Largo Paolo Braccini 2, 10095 Grugliasco, Torino, Italy
Interests: food microbiology; food safety; food hygiene; microbial biofilm; food borne pathogens; antimicrobial-resistance

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

The emergence of antimicrobial-resistance (AMR) in bacteria represents a major challenge for public health. The use, misuse, or indiscriminate use of antibiotics as therapeutic drugs in animal husbandry and plant health may contribute to the development of AMR in food-borne pathogens. There is growing concern over the possibility of AMR transmission via the food chain. Additionally, food processing environments could act as potential hotspots for AMR acquisition and spread. Indeed, biocide use and exposure to food‐related stresses could presumably act as selection pressures for increased microbial resistance to antibiotics. Monitoring of AMR in food-borne pathogens in food‐producing animals and their food products is crucial for understanding the development and diffusion of resistance, providing relevant risk assessment data, and evaluating targeted interventions. Currently, omics technologies are valuable tools to evaluate the dissemination and distribution of AMR of food-borne pathogens in the food chain. I invite authors to submit articles covering all aspects of this theme. Manuscripts concerning other related areas of interest are welcome, such as the following:

  1. The epidemiology and surveillance of AMR from farm to fork;
  2. The impact of biocide use and exposure to food-processing technologies on the prevalence of AMR in food-borne pathogens;
  3. Molecular approaches tools in order to investigate the AMR mechanism involved;
  4. The relationship between biofilm formation and AMR.

Dr. Pierluigi Di Ciccio
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

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Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Antibiotics is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1800 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • antimicrobial-resistance
  • food-borne pathogens
  • food chain
  • food safety
  • omics
  • AMR control

Published Papers (10 papers)

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Editorial

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Editorial
Antimicrobial-Resistance of Food-Borne Pathogens
Antibiotics 2021, 10(4), 372; https://doi.org/10.3390/antibiotics10040372 - 01 Apr 2021
Viewed by 591
Abstract
The antimicrobial-resistance (AMR) in bacteria represents a major challenge for public health [...] Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Antimicrobial-Resistance of Food-Borne Pathogens)

Research

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Article
16S rRNA Sequencing Analysis of the Gut Microbiota in Broiler Chickens Prophylactically Administered with Antimicrobial Agents
Antibiotics 2021, 10(2), 146; https://doi.org/10.3390/antibiotics10020146 - 02 Feb 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1057
Abstract
In poultry production, gut microbiota (GM) plays a pivotal role and influences different host functions related to the efficiency of production performances. Antimicrobial (AM) use is one of the main factors affecting GM composition and functions. Although several studies have focused their attention [...] Read more.
In poultry production, gut microbiota (GM) plays a pivotal role and influences different host functions related to the efficiency of production performances. Antimicrobial (AM) use is one of the main factors affecting GM composition and functions. Although several studies have focused their attention on the role of AMs as growth promoters in the modulation of GM in broilers, the consequences of higher AM concentrations administered during prophylactic treatments need to be better elucidated. For this purpose, 16S rRNA gene sequencing was performed to evaluate the impact of different prophylactic AM protocols on the composition and diversity of the broiler GM. Diversity analysis has shown that AM treatment significantly affects alpha diversity in ileum and beta diversity in both ileum and caecum. In ileal samples, the Enterobacteriaceae family has been shown to be particularly affected by AM treatments. AMs have been demonstrated to affect GM composition in broiler. These findings indicate that withdrawal periods were not enough for the restoral of the original GM. Further studies are needed for a better elucidation of the negative effects caused by an altered GM in broilers. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Antimicrobial-Resistance of Food-Borne Pathogens)
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Article
Escherichia coli of Ready-to-Eat (RTE) Meats Origin Showed Resistance to Antibiotics Used by Farmers
Antibiotics 2020, 9(12), 869; https://doi.org/10.3390/antibiotics9120869 - 04 Dec 2020
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 2366
Abstract
Bacterial foodborne infections, including meat-derived infections, are globally associated with diseases and some deaths. Antibiotics are sometimes used to treat bacterial infections. The use of antibiotics by farmers contributes to the development of resistance by foodborne pathogens. This study aimed to investigate the [...] Read more.
Bacterial foodborne infections, including meat-derived infections, are globally associated with diseases and some deaths. Antibiotics are sometimes used to treat bacterial infections. The use of antibiotics by farmers contributes to the development of resistance by foodborne pathogens. This study aimed to investigate the antibiotics used by farmers and the occurrence of antibiotic-resistant Escherichia coli in ready-to-eat (RTE) meat sources. Data was obtained from livestock farmers through the administration of semistructured questionnaires (n = 376) to obtain information on their demographics, knowledge and antibiotic usage. The procedure in the USA Food and Drug Administration (FDA)’s Bacteriological Analytical Manual was used for E. coli detection. Antibiotic resistance test was performed using the disk diffusion method. The findings revealed that most of the farmers were male (74.5%), were aged 30−39 years (28.5%), had tertiary education (30.3%) and had 6−10 years of experience in livestock husbandry. Sheep (65.7%) were the most reared livestock, and antibiotics were mostly used to treat sick animals (36.7%). Tetracycline (27.7%) was the most common antibiotic used by farmers, followed by amoxicillin/clavulanic acid (18.6%) and trimethoprim/sulfamethoxazole (11.7%). Most farmers (56.1%) said they had knowledge of antibiotic usage. The prevalence of E. coli in RTE meats was lowest in pork (6.0%) and highest in chevon (20.0%). E. coli isolates from RTE meats were highly resistant to teicoplanin (96.77%), tetracycline (93.55%), amoxicillin/clavulanic (70.97%), azithromycin (70.97%) and trimethoprim/sulfamethoxazole (58.06%) but was susceptible to chloramphenicol (93.55%), ciprofloxacin (61.29%) and ceftriaxone (58.06%). The multiple antibiotic index ranged from 0.22 to 0.78. Multidrug resistance (93.55%) was high among the E. coli isolates. The resistance pattern AmcAzmTecTeSxt (amoxicillin/clavulanic acid–azithromycin–telcoplanin–tetracycline–trimethoprim/sulfamethoxazole) was the most common. The use of antibiotics by farmers must be well regulated. Sellers of RTE meats also ought to take hygiene practices seriously to keep meat safe and healthy for public consumption. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Antimicrobial-Resistance of Food-Borne Pathogens)
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Article
Genotypic Characteristics and Correlation of Epidemiology of Staphylococcus aureus in Healthy Pigs, Diseased Pigs, and Environment
Antibiotics 2020, 9(12), 839; https://doi.org/10.3390/antibiotics9120839 - 24 Nov 2020
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 907
Abstract
China is one of the largest producers of pigs and pork in the world. However, large-scale studies on pig-associated Staphylococcus aureus in relation to healthy pigs, diseased pigs and environment are scarce. The objective of the present study was to characterize and compare [...] Read more.
China is one of the largest producers of pigs and pork in the world. However, large-scale studies on pig-associated Staphylococcus aureus in relation to healthy pigs, diseased pigs and environment are scarce. The objective of the present study was to characterize and compare S. aureus isolates from healthy pigs, diseased pigs and environment through antimicrobial susceptibility testing, multiple locus sequence typing, spa typing, and antimicrobial resistance gene screening. Results showed all isolates were susceptible to linezolid and vancomycin. However, 66.7% (104/156) isolates were multidrug-resistant by displaying resistance to three or more antibiotics and high rates of resistance to penicillin, tetracycline, clindamycin, and clarithromycin were observed. Of the 20 multilocus sequence types (STs) identified among the isolates, ST9, ST188, and ST7 were most commonly isolated from healthy pigs and environment, while ST1 was most commonly isolated from diseased pigs. In total, 17 spa types were represented among the isolates, while t4792 was most commonly isolated from diseased pigs and t899, t189 were most commonly isolated from healthy pigs and environment. In conclusion, the genotypic and epidemiology characteristics observed among the isolates suggest pigs and pork could be important players in S. aureus dissemination. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Antimicrobial-Resistance of Food-Borne Pathogens)
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Article
Genetic Profiles and Antimicrobial Resistance Patterns of Salmonella Infantis Strains Isolated in Italy in the Food Chain of Broiler Meat Production
Antibiotics 2020, 9(11), 814; https://doi.org/10.3390/antibiotics9110814 - 16 Nov 2020
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 957
Abstract
This work aimed to evaluate the antimicrobial susceptibility of 87 Salmonella Infantis strains isolated in Italy from 2016 to 2019 along the food chain of broiler meat production and in humans and to determine the genetic profiles of the strains in order to [...] Read more.
This work aimed to evaluate the antimicrobial susceptibility of 87 Salmonella Infantis strains isolated in Italy from 2016 to 2019 along the food chain of broiler meat production and in humans and to determine the genetic profiles of the strains in order to establish a possible correlation with the antimicrobial pattern. All isolates were tested by the disk diffusion method to evaluate antimicrobial susceptibility toward sixteen antimicrobials, and the broth microdilution method was used to confirm extended spectrum β-lactamase (ESBL) production. PCR and pulsed field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) were applied to characterize ESBL-encoding and AmpC β-lactamase genes and to analyze the S. Infantis strains genetic profiles respectively. S. Infantis isolates showed high prevalence of resistance, in particular toward nalidixic acid (97.7%), tetracycline (96.5%), sulphamethoxazole/trimethoprim (91%) and cefepime (72.4%). The 80.5% of isolates were ESBL, cefotaxime-resistant, carrying the blaCTX-M1 gene. The most prevalent PFGE profile was XbaI.0126 (35.6%). The remaining strains had a genetic homology from 81% to 97% with the XbaI.0126 profile. The strains belonging to these profiles were isolated from different matrices collected along the broiler food chain independently on the year and from the region and there was no correlation between the PFGE profiles and resistance patterns. We found two ESBL-producing S. Infantis strains with the same XbaI.2621 profile isolated from humans and from poultry feces, not yet reported in Italy. Our findings confirmed the diffusion of ESBL-multi drug resistant (MDR) S. Infantis along the broiler food chain and in humans and underlined the importance of continuous monitoring to control and to reduce the prevalence of this bacterium, applying a global One Health approach. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Antimicrobial-Resistance of Food-Borne Pathogens)
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Article
Characterization of Multidrug Resistance Patterns of Emerging Salmonella enterica Serovar Rissen along the Food Chain in China
Antibiotics 2020, 9(10), 660; https://doi.org/10.3390/antibiotics9100660 - 30 Sep 2020
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 1015
Abstract
Salmonella spp. are recognized as important foodborne pathogens globally. Salmonella enterica serovar Rissen is one of the important Salmonella serovars linked with swine products in numerous countries and can transmit to humans by food chain contamination. Worldwide emerging S. Rissen is considered [...] Read more.
Salmonella spp. are recognized as important foodborne pathogens globally. Salmonella enterica serovar Rissen is one of the important Salmonella serovars linked with swine products in numerous countries and can transmit to humans by food chain contamination. Worldwide emerging S. Rissen is considered as one of the most common pathogens to cause human salmonellosis. The objective of this study was to determine the antimicrobial resistance properties and patterns of Salmonella Rissen isolates obtained from humans, animals, animal-derived food products, and the environment in China. Between 2016 and 2019, a total of 311 S. Rissen isolates from different provinces or province-level cities in China were included here. Bacterial isolates were characterized by serotyping and antimicrobial susceptibility testing. Minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) values of 14 clinically relevant antimicrobials were obtained by broth microdilution method. S. Rissen isolates from humans were found dominant (67%; 208/311). S. Rissen isolates obtained from human patients were mostly found with diarrhea. Other S. Rissen isolates were acquired from food (22%; 69/311), animals (8%; 25/311), and the environment (3%; 9/311). Most of the isolates were resistant to tetracycline, trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole, chloramphenicol, streptomycin, sulfisoxazole, and ampicillin. The S. Rissen isolates showed susceptibility against ceftriaxone, ceftiofur, gentamicin, nalidixic acid, ciprofloxacin, and azithromycin. In total, 92% of the S. Rissen isolates were multidrug-resistant and ASSuT (27%), ACT (25%), ACSSuT (22%), ACSSuTAmc (11%), and ACSSuTFox (7%) patterns were among the most prevalent antibiotic resistance patterns found in this study. The widespread dissemination of antimicrobial resistance could have emerged from misuse of antimicrobial agents in animal husbandry in China. These findings could be useful for rational antimicrobial usage against Salmonella Rissen infections. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Antimicrobial-Resistance of Food-Borne Pathogens)
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Article
Antimicrobial Susceptibility Testing for Salmonella Serovars Isolated from Food Samples: Five-Year Monitoring (2015–2019)
Antibiotics 2020, 9(7), 365; https://doi.org/10.3390/antibiotics9070365 - 29 Jun 2020
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1067
Abstract
The continuous collection and analysis of updated data on the antimicrobic resistance among bacterial strains represent the essential core for the surveillance of this problem. The present work aimed to investigate the occurrence of antimicrobial resistance among Salmonella serovars isolated in foods in [...] Read more.
The continuous collection and analysis of updated data on the antimicrobic resistance among bacterial strains represent the essential core for the surveillance of this problem. The present work aimed to investigate the occurrence of antimicrobial resistance among Salmonella serovars isolated in foods in 2015–2019. A total of 178 Salmonella strains belonging to 39 serovars were tested against 10 antimicrobials. High proportions of Salmonella isolates were resistant to tetracycline (n = 53.9%), ciprofloxacin (n = 47.2%), ampicillin (n = 44.4%), nalidixic acid (n = 42.7%), and trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole (n = 38.8%). Different resistance rates were recorded among the different serotypes of Salmonella, and S. Infantis, exhibited the highest resistance to antibiotics. A high percentage of strains isolated from poultry, pork, and bovine were resistant to at least one or two antimicrobials. Resistant and multidrug-resistant (MDR) strains were also recorded among the isolates from molluscan shellfish; however, the occurrence of resistant Salmonella strains isolated from this source was significantly lower compared with those reported for poultry, pork, and bovine. The high levels of resistance reported in the present study indicate a potential public health risk. Consequently, additional hygiene and antibiotic stewardship practices should be considered for the food industry to prevent the prevalence of Salmonella in foods. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Antimicrobial-Resistance of Food-Borne Pathogens)
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Article
Genotypic and Phenotypic Evaluation of Biofilm Production and Antimicrobial Resistance in Staphylococcus aureus Isolated from Milk, North West Province, South Africa
Antibiotics 2020, 9(4), 156; https://doi.org/10.3390/antibiotics9040156 - 02 Apr 2020
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1460
Abstract
Background: Biofilm formation in S. aureus may reduce the rate of penetration of antibiotics, thereby complicating treatment of infections caused by these bacteria. The aim of this study was to correlate biofilm-forming potentials, antimicrobial resistance, and genes in S. aureus isolates. Methods [...] Read more.
Background: Biofilm formation in S. aureus may reduce the rate of penetration of antibiotics, thereby complicating treatment of infections caused by these bacteria. The aim of this study was to correlate biofilm-forming potentials, antimicrobial resistance, and genes in S. aureus isolates. Methods: A total of 64 milk samples were analysed, and 77 S. aureus were isolated. Results: Seventy (90.9%) isolates were biofilm producers. The ica biofilm-forming genes were detected among 75.3% of the isolates, with icaA being the most prevalent (49, 63.6%). The icaB gene was significantly (P = 0.027) higher in isolates with strong biofilm formation potentials. High resistance (60%–90%) of the isolates was observed against ceftriaxone, vancomycin, and penicillin, and 25 (32.5%) of S. aureus showed multidrug resistance (MDR) to at least three antibiotics. Five resistance genes, namely blaZ (29, 37.7%), vanC (29, 37.7%), tetK (24, 31.2%), tetL (21, 27.3%), and msrA/B (16, 20.8%) were detected. Most MDR phenotypes possessed at least one resistance gene alongside the biofilm genes. However, no distinct pattern was identified among the resistance and biofilm phenotypes. Conclusions: The high frequency of potentially pathogenic MDR S. aureus in milk samples intended for human consumption, demonstrates the public health relevance of this pathogen in the region. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Antimicrobial-Resistance of Food-Borne Pathogens)
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Article
Evaluation by Flow Cytometry of Escherichia coli Viability in Lettuce after Disinfection
Antibiotics 2020, 9(1), 14; https://doi.org/10.3390/antibiotics9010014 - 31 Dec 2019
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1986
Abstract
Foodborne outbreaks due to the consumption of ready-to-eat vegetables have increased worldwide, with Escherichia coli (E. coli) being one of the main sources responsible. Viable but nonculturable bacteria (VBNC) retain virulence even after some disinfection procedures and constitute a huge problem [...] Read more.
Foodborne outbreaks due to the consumption of ready-to-eat vegetables have increased worldwide, with Escherichia coli (E. coli) being one of the main sources responsible. Viable but nonculturable bacteria (VBNC) retain virulence even after some disinfection procedures and constitute a huge problem to public health due to their non-detectability through conventional microbiological techniques. Flow cytometry (FCM) is a promising tool in food microbiology as it enables the distinction of the different physiological states of bacteria after disinfection procedures within a short time. In this study, samples of lettuce inoculated with E. coli were subject to disinfection with sodium hypochlorite at free chlorine concentrations of 5, 10, 25, 50, and 100 mg·L−1 or with 35% peracetic acid at concentrations of 5, 10, 25, and 50 mg·L−1. The efficiency of these disinfectants on the viability of E. coli in lettuce was evaluated by flow cytometry with LIVE/DEAD stains. Results from this study suggest that FCM can effectively monitor cell viability. However, peracetic acid is more effective than sodium hypochlorite as, at half the concentration, it is enough to kill 100% of bacteria and always induces a lower percentage of VBNC. Finally, we can conclude that the recommended levels of chemical disinfectants for fresh fruit and vegetables are adequate when applied in lettuce. More importantly, it is possible to ensure that all cells of E. coli are dead and that there are no VBNC cells even with lower concentrations of those chemicals. These results can serve as guidance for lettuce disinfection, improving quality and the safety of consumption. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Antimicrobial-Resistance of Food-Borne Pathogens)
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Review

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Review
Extended Spectrum β-Lactamase (ESBL) Producing Escherichia coli in Pigs and Pork Meat in the European Union
Antibiotics 2020, 9(10), 678; https://doi.org/10.3390/antibiotics9100678 - 07 Oct 2020
Cited by 12 | Viewed by 1469
Abstract
The aim of this article is to review the fast and worldwide distribution of ESBL enzymes and to describe the role of the pork production chain as a reservoir and transmission route of ESBL-producing Escherichia coli and ESBLs in the European Union (EU). [...] Read more.
The aim of this article is to review the fast and worldwide distribution of ESBL enzymes and to describe the role of the pork production chain as a reservoir and transmission route of ESBL-producing Escherichia coli and ESBLs in the European Union (EU). The use of β-lactam antibiotics in swine production and the prevalence of ESBL producing E. coli in fattening pigs and pork meat across Europe is analyzed. Overall, an increasing trend in the prevalence of presumptive ESBL producing E. coli in fattening pigs in the EU has been observed in the last decade, although with major differences among countries, linked to different approaches in the use of antimicrobials in pork production within the EU. Moreover, the various dissemination pathways of these bacteria along the pork production chain are described, along with factors at farm and slaughterhouse level influencing the risk of introducing or spreading ESBL producing bacteria throughout the food chain. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Antimicrobial-Resistance of Food-Borne Pathogens)
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