Industrial farming growing, dispersing drug-resistant pathogens

06-10-2009

Industrial farming growing, dispersing drug-resistant pathogens

Adding antibiotics to farm animal feed is fostering, dispersing drug-resistant bacteria that imperil public health, researchers are learning. Chicken, cow, pig manure - 335 million tons annually - distributes pathogens through fertilizer and manure lagoons, where infectious microbes infiltrate air, soil, water, and are transported by houseflies, farm trucks, farm workers. Government requires no disclosure on microbial use in agriculture. In his 1945 Nobel Prize address, Alexander Fleming, who discovered penicillin, had warned of ease in making microbes resistant; Pork Board spokesperson isn't convinced.

Read the story at Johns Hopkins Magazine


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