A Review on Antibiotic Resistant and Implication on Food Chain

Mekonnen Addis


Antibiotic are important tools that are integral to our complex food system and provide for high quality or good physical condition of food animals entering the food chain. Antibiotic resistance may be intrinsic to a microorganism, or it may develop via mutation or adaptation to stressors. Antibiotic-resistant pathogens may create an increased burden to human health in different ways: (1) resistant pathogens contaminating food animals have the potential to reach humans; (2) human use of antibiotics may increase the risk of acquiring an infection with an antimicrobial resistant pathogen; (3) human infection with a resistant microbe may limit illness treatment options (in the uncommon instances of food borne illness in which antibiotic use is warranted); and (4) antibiotic-resistant food borne pathogens may develop increased virulence. The extent to which antibiotic use in food animals produces clinically important antibiotic-resistant infections in humans is unknown. Antibiotic-resistant intestinal bacteria may be present in food animals, regardless of exposure of the animals to an antibiotic. In spite of the best efforts to prevent or eliminate them, some antibiotic-resistant bacteria contaminate carcasses, as do antibiotic susceptible bacteria. The key points of influence that food scientists have in preventing the spread of antibiotic-resistant and sensitive pathogenic microorganisms in foods are preventing them from entering the food supply, and if present, inactivating them or preventing their growth. Interventions that effectively reduce the prevalence of foodborne pathogens also reduce the prevalence of those that are resistant to antibiotics. Risk management strategies to minimize and contain antibiotic resistant foodborne bacteria are in place all along the food chain, but can be improved. The strategies that have been implemented include use of antibiotic alternatives, implementation of judicious or prudent antibiotic use guidelines, and implementation of national resistance monitoring programs.

Keywords: Antibiotics, Antibiotic Resistance, Food, Food Chain

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ISSN (Paper)2224-6088 ISSN (Online)2225-0557

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