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February 2, 1952


JAMA. 1952;148(5):376. doi:10.1001/jama.1952.02930050048015

The markedly increased rates of growth that follow the addition of small amounts of the broad spectrum antibiotics to animal rations has led to widespread use of antibiotic supplements by livestock feeders. A report by Starr and Reynolds1 draws attention to potential health hazards that may eventually offset the immediate economic gains afforded by this practice. These investigators found that the addition of small amounts of streptomycin to the rations of turkey poults caused the rapid appearance of highly streptomycin resistant coliform bacteria in feces cultures. The presence of resistant pathogens in fowls is of no great consequence in the poultry industry, since the use of antibiotics in diseases of birds is generally uneconomical. However, the spread of drug-fast strains of Salmonella to larger farm animals could, in the authors' opinion, be serious, as the value of meat animals justifies the use of chemotherapeutic agents in livestock diseases. Of

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