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      Antibiotic resistance in the environment

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          Abstract

          Antibiotic resistance is a global health challenge, involving the transfer of bacteria and genes between humans, animals and the environment. Although multiple barriers restrict the flow of both bacteria and genes, pathogens recurrently acquire new resistance factors from other species, thereby reducing our ability to prevent and treat bacterial infections. Evolutionary events that lead to the emergence of new resistance factors in pathogens are rare and challenging to predict, but may be associated with vast ramifications. Transmission events of already widespread resistant strains are, on the other hand, common, quantifiable and more predictable, but the consequences of each event are limited. Quantifying the pathways and identifying the drivers of and bottlenecks for environmental evolution and transmission of antibiotic resistance are key components to understand and manage the resistance crisis as a whole. In this Review, we present our current understanding of the roles of the environment, including antibiotic pollution, in resistance evolution, in transmission and as a mere reflection of the regional antibiotic resistance situation in the clinic. We provide a perspective on current evidence, describe risk scenarios, discuss methods for surveillance and the assessment of potential drivers, and finally identify some actions to mitigate risks.

          Abstract

          In this Review, Larsson and Flach discuss the drivers of and bottlenecks for environmental evolution and transmission of antibiotic resistance, and they explore environmental surveillance strategies that could complement clinical surveillance systems.

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          Most cited references159

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          Is Open Access

          CARD 2020: antibiotic resistome surveillance with the comprehensive antibiotic resistance database

          Abstract The Comprehensive Antibiotic Resistance Database (CARD; https://card.mcmaster.ca) is a curated resource providing reference DNA and protein sequences, detection models and bioinformatics tools on the molecular basis of bacterial antimicrobial resistance (AMR). CARD focuses on providing high-quality reference data and molecular sequences within a controlled vocabulary, the Antibiotic Resistance Ontology (ARO), designed by the CARD biocuration team to integrate with software development efforts for resistome analysis and prediction, such as CARD’s Resistance Gene Identifier (RGI) software. Since 2017, CARD has expanded through extensive curation of reference sequences, revision of the ontological structure, curation of over 500 new AMR detection models, development of a new classification paradigm and expansion of analytical tools. Most notably, a new Resistomes & Variants module provides analysis and statistical summary of in silico predicted resistance variants from 82 pathogens and over 100 000 genomes. By adding these resistance variants to CARD, we are able to summarize predicted resistance using the information included in CARD, identify trends in AMR mobility and determine previously undescribed and novel resistance variants. Here, we describe updates and recent expansions to CARD and its biocuration process, including new resources for community biocuration of AMR molecular reference data.
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            Origins and evolution of antibiotic resistance.

            Antibiotics have always been considered one of the wonder discoveries of the 20th century. This is true, but the real wonder is the rise of antibiotic resistance in hospitals, communities, and the environment concomitant with their use. The extraordinary genetic capacities of microbes have benefitted from man's overuse of antibiotics to exploit every source of resistance genes and every means of horizontal gene transmission to develop multiple mechanisms of resistance for each and every antibiotic introduced into practice clinically, agriculturally, or otherwise. This review presents the salient aspects of antibiotic resistance development over the past half-century, with the oft-restated conclusion that it is time to act. To achieve complete restitution of therapeutic applications of antibiotics, there is a need for more information on the role of environmental microbiomes in the rise of antibiotic resistance. In particular, creative approaches to the discovery of novel antibiotics and their expedited and controlled introduction to therapy are obligatory.
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              Mobile Genetic Elements Associated with Antimicrobial Resistance

              SUMMARY Strains of bacteria resistant to antibiotics, particularly those that are multiresistant, are an increasing major health care problem around the world. It is now abundantly clear that both Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacteria are able to meet the evolutionary challenge of combating antimicrobial chemotherapy, often by acquiring preexisting resistance determinants from the bacterial gene pool. This is achieved through the concerted activities of mobile genetic elements able to move within or between DNA molecules, which include insertion sequences, transposons, and gene cassettes/integrons, and those that are able to transfer between bacterial cells, such as plasmids and integrative conjugative elements. Together these elements play a central role in facilitating horizontal genetic exchange and therefore promote the acquisition and spread of resistance genes. This review aims to outline the characteristics of the major types of mobile genetic elements involved in acquisition and spread of antibiotic resistance in both Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacteria, focusing on the so-called ESKAPEE group of organisms ( Enterococcus faecium , Staphylococcus aureus , Klebsiella pneumoniae , Acinetobacter baumannii , Pseudomonas aeruginosa , Enterobacter spp., and Escherichia coli ), which have become the most problematic hospital pathogens.
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                Author and article information

                Contributors
                joakim.larsson@fysiologi.gu.se
                Journal
                Nat Rev Microbiol
                Nat Rev Microbiol
                Nature Reviews. Microbiology
                Nature Publishing Group UK (London )
                1740-1526
                1740-1534
                4 November 2021
                : 1-13
                Affiliations
                [1 ]GRID grid.8761.8, ISNI 0000 0000 9919 9582, Centre for Antibiotic Resistance Research at University of Gothenburg, ; Gothenburg, Sweden
                [2 ]GRID grid.8761.8, ISNI 0000 0000 9919 9582, Institute of Biomedicine, Department of Infectious Diseases, Sahlgrenska Academy, , University of Gothenburg, ; Gothenburg, Sweden
                Author information
                http://orcid.org/0000-0002-5496-0328
                http://orcid.org/0000-0002-4101-5095
                Article
                649
                10.1038/s41579-021-00649-x
                8567979
                34737424
                a9d24942-1abd-4174-bd37-7f6680b984f7
                © Springer Nature Limited 2021

                This article is made available via the PMC Open Access Subset for unrestricted research re-use and secondary analysis in any form or by any means with acknowledgement of the original source. These permissions are granted for the duration of the World Health Organization (WHO) declaration of COVID-19 as a global pandemic.

                History
                : 1 October 2021
                Categories
                Review Article

                antimicrobial resistance,microbial ecology,bacterial infection

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