Essay about Antibiotic Resistance Of Lactic Acid Bacteria

Essay about Antibiotic Resistance Of Lactic Acid Bacteria

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Antibiotic Resistance in Lactic Acid Bacteria

1. Introduction

Antibiotic resistance is a growing problem worldwide. For decades, the overuse and misuse of antibiotics has produced a formidable selective pressure towards antibiotic resistant bacteria (Levy, 1992). Bacteria have evolved and conceived different mechanisms of resistances like the production of proteins to increase export or decrease uptake of antibiotics (Sutcliffe et al., 1996), modification of the target molecule structure (Aarestrup et al., 2000) or inactivation of the antibiotic (Normark and Normark, 2002).



Emergence of antibiotic resistance (AR) is becoming a global threat due to the increasing inefficiency of common antibiotics and the situation is worsened by the horizontal transfer of genes (Schlegelova et al., 2002).

Lactic acid bacteria (LAB) are common microorganisms of the human gut flora and in foods.


Lactic acid bacteria (LAB) have always been used in the consumption and production of fermented foods and beverages (Leroy and Vuyst, 2004). Large quantities of LAB are consumed specially in fermented foods. LAB used as starter culture for food production could perhaps contain antibiotic resistance (AR) genes (Danielsen and Wind, 2003). They are also involved in lactic acid fermentation for yoghurt production where Lactobacillus bulgaricus and Streptococcus thermophilus are used (Adolfson et al., 2004). Recently scientists speculated that these food bacteria act as reservoirs of AR genes and fermented foods act as carriers of huge amounts of living bacteria which might transfer AR genes to pathogenic or commensal bacteria (Franz et al., 2006). LAB like Lactococcus lactis and many Lactobacillus and Enterococcus species frequently harbor plasmids w...


... middle of paper ...


...hould concentrate on horizontal gene transfer of various resistance genes found in LAB.
Though safety evaluation of LAB used in the food industry is very important, there are several difficulties which arise. For example, no approved standards are present for the phenotypic and genotypic evaluation of antibiotic resistances in food isolates. Another problem is the actual antibiotic concentration in human blood serum was not taken into consideration. Hummel et al. (2006) concluded that safety evaluation systems should address to such problems and allow flexible interpretation of results.
Pan et al. (2011) concluded that their present research showed that LAB strains from Chinese fermented foods carry multiple antibiotic resistances and the underlying mechanisms and genetic basis of this has to be further studied for the safety assessment of Chinese food.

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