E. coli bacteria are found naturally in large quantities in our intestines. These bacteria do not normally cause disease, but there are several strains that can result in diarrhoea. In serious cases, they can also cause peritonitis and septicaemia.
The faeces of 128 Swedish infants were analysed in the studies underlying the thesis. The results show that 21% of E. coli strains in these infants' gut flora were resistant to at least one type of antibiotic. Even children who had never been given antibiotics had resistant bacterial strains in their intestines.
"This is a growing problem, and it's serious even when ordinary harmless bacteria develop resistance, as these genes can be transferred to more harmful bacteria," says microbiologist Nahid Karami.
Many had thought that resistant bacteria would disappear if the use of antibiotics were to be reduced, but the thesis shows that E. coli strains carrying resistance genes are just as good at colonising the gut for long periods as sensitive strains.
"Our research suggests that there's little cost to the bacteria from carrying a resistance gene, and this presumably means that this resistance will be retained for a long time by the bacteria in our gut flora even if we stop using antibiotics," says Karami.
Bacteria have a natural ability to absorb and transfer resistance genes to other bacteria. The study discovered two cases of such transfers between E. coli strains found simultaneously in a child's intestines. The first was in an infant who was treated with penicillin, and the second in an infant who was not treated with antibiotics.
"Our results suggest that the transfer of resistance genes in the gut flora may be very common, which makes the resistance issue much more serious, as genes can easily be transferred from bacteria in the normal flora to more harmful bacteria," says Karami.Thesis presented for the title Doctor of Medicine at the Sahlgrenska Academy, Institute of Biomedicine, Department of Infectious Medicine
Title of thesis: Antibiotic resistance and fitness of Escherichia coli in the infantile commensal microbiota
The thesis is defended.
Further information: Nahid Karami, microbiologist, tel: +46 31 342 4729, mobile: +46 70 521 4860, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Supervisor: Associate Professor Agnes Wold, tel: +46 31 342 4617, e-mail: email@example.com
Elin Lindström Claessen; +46-70 829 43 03; firstname.lastname@example.org
Gene therapy shows promise for treating Niemann-Pick disease type C1
27.10.2016 | NIH/National Human Genome Research Institute
'Neighbor maps' reveal the genome's 3-D shape
27.10.2016 | International School of Advanced Studies (SISSA)
Ultrafast lasers have introduced new possibilities in engraving ultrafine structures, and scientists are now also investigating how to use them to etch microstructures into thin glass. There are possible applications in analytics (lab on a chip) and especially in electronics and the consumer sector, where great interest has been shown.
This new method was born of a surprising phenomenon: irradiating glass in a particular way with an ultrafast laser has the effect of making the glass up to a...
Terahertz excitation of selected crystal vibrations leads to an effective magnetic field that drives coherent spin motion
Controlling functional properties by light is one of the grand goals in modern condensed matter physics and materials science. A new study now demonstrates how...
Researchers from the Institute for Quantum Computing (IQC) at the University of Waterloo led the development of a new extensible wiring technique capable of controlling superconducting quantum bits, representing a significant step towards to the realization of a scalable quantum computer.
"The quantum socket is a wiring method that uses three-dimensional wires based on spring-loaded pins to address individual qubits," said Jeremy Béjanin, a PhD...
In a paper in Scientific Reports, a research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute describes a novel light-activated phenomenon that could become the basis for applications as diverse as microscopic robotic grippers and more efficient solar cells.
A research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) has developed a revolutionary, light-activated semiconductor nanocomposite material that can be used...
By forcefully embedding two silicon atoms in a diamond matrix, Sandia researchers have demonstrated for the first time on a single chip all the components needed to create a quantum bridge to link quantum computers together.
"People have already built small quantum computers," says Sandia researcher Ryan Camacho. "Maybe the first useful one won't be a single giant quantum computer...
14.10.2016 | Event News
14.10.2016 | Event News
12.10.2016 | Event News
27.10.2016 | Materials Sciences
27.10.2016 | Physics and Astronomy
27.10.2016 | Life Sciences