Bacteria resistant to 'antibiotic of last resort' found in the United States

In the new study, researchers reported that through intergovernmental communication, the CDC and the Department of Agriculture (USDA) also have identified a swine intestinal infection with a single mcr-1 positive E. coli strain. MCR-1 is a gene that makes E. coli and some other species of bacteria resistant to colistin.

It follows reports of a Pennsylvania woman in the US who was found to be carrying bacteria resistant to antibiotics.

The patient visited a clinic on April the 26th complaining of symptoms of a urinary tract infection, according to the study.

But when Public Health England began testing 24,000 bacterial samples from 2012 to 2015 it found 15 cases of colistin-resistance. "We are taking the emergence of this resistance gene very seriously".

"This is another piece of a really nasty puzzle that we didn't want to see here", said Dr. Beth Bell, who oversees CDC's emerging infectious diseases programs. There have been a few bacterias that have become resistant to a number of antibiotics, but quite often this was found to be the result of a mutation in a single organism.

"Unfortunately, this revelation is likely to herald further cases in the U.S.as well, and it will only be a matter of time when a patient gets a truly serious infection for which we have no viable antibiotics to treat them with", he said.

As far as the potential for anti-resistant bacteria to spread, Laura Piddock, a professor of microbiology in the United Kingdom, told Reuters that she believes the use of antibiotics in livestock farming like, polymyxins, which reportedly include colistin (the "last resort" antibiotic), should be restricted.

The Pennsylvania case and swine case may not be linked, but "the evidence of the strain in the U.S.is a public health concern" that "could worsen the current global crisis of antimicrobial resistance", according to the release. "

 Speaking at a National Press Club lunch in Washington DC, Mr Frieden, said the infection was not controlled even by colistin, an antibiotic that is reserved for use against "nightmare bacteria". I've cared for patients for whom there are no drugs left.

In the USA, antibiotic resistance has been blamed for at least two million illnesses and 23,000 deaths a year.

 

 

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