Antibiotic Resistance of Staphylococcus aureus in Watersheds With and Without Commercial Hog Operations Public Deposited

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  • March 22, 2019
  • Wickersham, Lindsay
    • Affiliation: Gillings School of Global Public Health, Department of Environmental Sciences and Engineering
  • Antibiotic use in commercial hog operations (CHOs) can lead to selection of antibiotic resistant bacteria, which is a concern for zoonotic bacteria such as Staphylococcus aureus. However, the extent to which antibiotic resistant S. aureus from CHOs contaminates surrounding surface waters is unknown. To determine whether watersheds with CHOs have more multidrug resistant S. aureus (MDRSA) and livestock-associated S. aureus than watersheds without CHOs, S. aureus was isolated and characterized from surface water samples (n=44) from sites with CHOs in their watersheds (n=3) and without CHOs (n=3). S. aureus (n=84) was isolated from 100% of CHO sites and 66% of non-CHO sites. MDRSA (n=23) was only recovered from one CHO site on one sampling event and was positive for markers of livestock-association. No MDRSA or livestock-associated S. aureus was found in non-CHO sites. This research suggests that CHOs can episodically contribute livestock-associated MDRSA to surface water.
Date of publication
Resource type
  • Woods, Courtney
  • Stewart, Jill
  • Ball, Louise
  • Master of Science
Degree granting institution
  • University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Graduation year
  • 2018

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