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2nd Asm Conference on Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococci in Animals: Veterinary and Public Health Implications


We propose a meeting that will integrate recent developments in subject areas ranging from the basic epidemiology of animal-associated MRSA to developments in genomics, pathogenesis, and disease prevention. The goal is to integrate these diverse disciplines in order to create a holistic appreciation of the role of animals, and particularly food animals, in the ecology and transmission of MRSA. This conference is also unique due to its international scope and its involvement of both human and animal health professionals.

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<p>NON-TECHNICAL SUMMARY: <br/>The epidemiology of methicillin-resistant S. aureus (MRSA) has changed considerably over the last 15 years. Once confined largely to the hospital setting, community-associated strains of MRSA (CA-MRSA) are now estimated to colonize millions of Americans (Klevens, et al. 2007). Additionally, research carried out over the last 5 years has shown that animals, including livestock and poultry, can also be colonized with MRSA (Khanna, et al. 2008,Smith, et al. 2009,van Loo, et al. 2007), leading to a concern regarding food-borne transmission of MRSA to humans. Recent reports have also found MRSA present on retail meat products (de Boer, et al. 2009,Pu, et al. 2008,van Loo, et al. 2007) . Though outbreaks associated with MRSA acquired from food products have been reported (Jones, et al. 2002,Kluytmans, et al. 1995), these appear to be rare. However,
these outbreak situations have focused on "classic" food-borne S. aureus infections, due to ingestion of pre-formed toxins produced by the bacteria and resulting in rapid-onset diarrhea and stomach cramping. A focus on these types of infection ignores the potential for individuals to contract S. aureus colonization directly due to meat handling, and currently, the frequency of acquisition of MRSA or other antibiotic-resistant strains of S. aureus from meat products is unknown.
<p>APPROACH: <br/>The ASM Conference on MRSA in Animals is the only international meeting that brings together the world's leading scientists working on all aspects of this problem. This meeting can have broad appeal across various groups interested in methicillin-resistant staphylococci, including microbiologists, veterinarians, physicians, infection control personnel (human medical and veterinary), public health personnel and government personnel. One of the strong points of this meeting is bringing people from diverse backgrounds together and stimulating cross-discipline discussion and collaboration.

Smith, Tara C; Weese, J Scott; Nalker, Lisa
University of Iowa
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