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Multidrug-Resistant Klebsiella pneumoniae Isolated from Farm Environments and Retail Products in Oklahoma

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Multidrug-resistant enteric bacteria were isolated from turkey, cattle, and chicken farms and retail meat products in Oklahoma. Among the isolated species, multidrug-resistant Klebsiella pneumoniae was prevalently isolated from most of the collected samples. Therefore, a total of 132 isolates of K. pneumoniae were characterized to understand their potential roles in the dissemination of antibiotic-resistance genes in the food chains. Multidrug-resistant K. pneumoniae was most frequently recovered from a turkey farm and ground turkey products among the tested samples. All isolates were resistant to ampicillin, tetracycline, streptomycin, gentamycin, and kanamycin. Class 1 integrons located in plasmids were identified as a common carrier of the aadA1 gene, encoding resistance to streptomycin and spectinomycin. Production of β-lactamase in the K. pneumoniae isolates played a major role in the resistance to β-lactam agents. Most isolates (96%) possessed bla SHV-1. Five strains were able to express both SHV-11 (pI 6.2) and TEM-1 (pI 5.2) β-lactamase. Transfer of these antibiotic-resistance genes to Escherichia coli was demonstrated by transconjugation. The bacterial genomic DNA restriction patterns by pulsed-field gel electrophoresis showed that the same clones of multidrug-resistant K. pneumoniae remained in feathers, feed, feces, and drinking water in turkey environments, indicating the possible dissemination of antibiotic-resistance genes in the ecosystem and cross-contamination of antibiotic-resistant bacteria during processing and distribution of products.

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Department of Nutritional Sciences, College of Human Environmental Sciences, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, Oklahoma 74078, USA 2: School of Pharmacy, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, California 90089, USA

Publication date: October 1, 2005

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    First published in 1937, the Journal of Food Protection®, is a refereed monthly publication. Each issue contains scientific research and authoritative review articles reporting on a variety of topics in food science pertaining to food safety and quality. The Journal is internationally recognized as the leading publication in the field of food microbiology with a readership exceeding 11,000 scientists from 70 countries. The Journal of Food Protection® is indexed in Index Medicus, Current Contents, BIOSIS, PubMed, Medline, and many others.

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