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Antibiotic Resistance

CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 1, 2014 | By Eryn Brown
Visitors and patients at UCLA hospitals probably won't notice what's gone missing from the chili, hamburgers and chicken dishes they order for lunch. But by putting antibiotic-free ground beef, ground beef patties and chicken breasts on the menus at the university's Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center and UCLA Medical Center in Santa Monica, hospital officials hope to strike a blow against so-called superbugs. Feeding antibiotics to cows, chicken and pigs is a common practice that enhances growth in the animals but also contributes to the growing problem of antibiotic resistance: when microbes evolve to become impervious to attack, making it more and more difficult for physicians to treat infections.
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SCIENCE
December 10, 2012 | By Eryn Brown
Scientists said Sunday that the Clostridium difficile epidemic from 2002 to 2006 - an outbreak of gastrointestinal illness that spanned hospitals across the globe - was caused by two closely-related strains of the bacterium and not one, as had been previously believed. Trevor Lawley of the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute in Hinxton, England and coauthors from other institutions sequenced the genomes of C. difficile samples collected between 1985 and 2010, mainly from hospital patients.  Analyzing the samples, they found the two lineages of the bacterium,which they named FQR1 and FQR2.
SCIENCE
September 16, 2013 | By Eryn Brown
Estimated cases of infection with methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus , or MRSA, fell more than 30% in the U.S. between 2005 and 2011, suggesting that heightened efforts to combat the infections in hospitals had made a difference, researchers wrote Monday in the online edition of JAMA Internal Medicine. But another report, also published online in the journal, found that people who lived closest to farms had higher rates of MRSA infection than people who lived farthest from farms - reflecting ongoing concerns about antibiotic use in agriculture and its effects on human health.
HEALTH
January 9, 2012 | By Jill U. Adams, Special to the Los Angeles Times
Only 20% of the antibiotics sold in the U.S. are given to people who are sick with bacterial infections, such as ear and urinary tract infections and pneumonia. Most of the penicillin, tetracycline and other antibiotic drugs used in this country are given to livestock that are perfectly healthy. Farmers have been putting these medicines in animal feed since the 1950s. They say the drugs help protect herds from infectious diseases and help animals grow faster. But for at least 40 years, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has been concerned that the widespread practice may be fueling the growth of human pathogens that are no longer vulnerable to doctors' front-line drugs.
HEALTH
April 11, 2012 | By Melissa Healy, Los Angeles Times
No place on Earth demonstrates the resilience or inventiveness of life quite like Lechuguilla Cave, whose subterranean tunnels stretch for 130 miles through Carlsbad Caverns National Park in New Mexico. Deep in the cave's most arid recesses, deprived of all sunlight and mostly starved of life-giving water, a lush garden of bacteria grows. Untouched by humans for all of their 4 million years, these strains of bacteria thrive on the harsh minerals of the geological formations to which they cling and fend off other life forms that would prey on them.
NEWS
April 27, 2000 | From the Washington Post
Researchers have concluded that a Nebraska boy's infection by salmonella bacteria resistant to a widely used pediatric antibiotic came from cattle on his farm. The report has heightened concerns of public health officials that the routine use of antibiotics by farmers to treat and promote the growth of livestock is reducing the ability of similar antibiotics to cure humans of infections.
NEWS
August 16, 1987 | ROB STEIN, United Press International
Bacteria, which cause a wide variety of diseases in humans ranging from diarrhea to pneumonia, appear to be developing resistance to medicine's arsenal of antibiotic drugs at an alarming rate around the world. More types of bacteria are becoming resistant to antibiotics, and organisms already resistant to one drug are developing resistance to new drugs, according to a new government-sponsored study. "You have to say it's serious," said Dr. Stuart B.
NEWS
December 13, 1991 | From Times Wire Services
In a recent study, researchers in Seattle found antibiotics highly effective in preventing persistent urinary tract infections in all but two young women they studied. Laboratory tests uncovered the apparent reason for the two exceptions. Both women harbored infection-causing bacteria in their systems that were resistant to antibiotics, making the drugs unable to kill the bacteria.
NEWS
June 4, 1997 | JONATHAN BOR, THE BALTIMORE SUN
People striving to sterilize their homes and hands with anti-bacterial soaps may be fueling the development of dangerous organisms that defy known drugs, according to an authority on drug-resistant strains. Dr. Stuart Levy of Tufts University, president of the Alliance for Prudent Use of Antibiotics, said last week that the popularity of disinfectant cleaners could not come at a worse time--an era when hospitals are discharging patients earlier to complete their recoveries at home.
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