Soil bacteria and human pathogens have recently swapped several antibiotic-resistance genes, suggesting that environmental bacteria may be contributing to ongoing clinical challenges of antibiotic resistance (Forsberg KJ et al. Science. doi:10.1126/science.1220761 [published online August 31, 2012]).
A team led by investigators at Washington University School of Medicine, in St Louis, found 7 genes in farmland soil bacteria from different US sites that share perfect identity with resistance genes in various strains of Salmonella, Klebsiella pneumoniae, and other disease-causing pathogens.
Hampton T. Clues to Antibiotic Resistance. JAMA. 2012;308(13):1310. doi:10.1001/jama.2012.12679
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