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IJERPH, Vol. 14, Pages 576: The Occurrence of the Colistin Resistance Gene mcr-1 in the Haihe River (China)

29 May 2017

Antibiotic failure is occurring worldwide. In a routine surveillance study on antibioticresistance genes (ARGs) in natural water bodies, we noted the detection of colistin-resistance gene mcr-1, previously identified in Escherichia coli and Klebsiella pneumoniae isolates from human beings and animals in several countries. The mcr-1 gene might be present in water environments, because aquatic ecosystems are recognized as reservoirs for antibiotic resistant bacteria (ARB) and ARGs. In this study, a qPCR assay was developed to monitor and quantify the mcr-1 gene in the Haihe River, China. The results showed that all 18 samples collected from different locations over 6 months along the Haihe River were positive for the mcr-1 gene, and the highest level of mcr-1 reached 3.81 × 105 gene copies (GC) per liter of water. This is the first study to quantify mcr-1 in a natural water system by qPCR. Our findings highlight the potential for this antibiotic resistance determinant to spread extensively, suggesting a significant health and ecological impact.

Click here to view the full article which appeared in International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health