Antibiotic Resistance Surveillance in Retail Food Specimens in Texas andOklahomaProject SummaryThe National Antimicrobial Resistance Monitoring System (NARMS), a surveillancesystem established in 1996, tracks antibiotic resistance in enteric bacteria from humans,retail meats, and food animals, and its different programs on emerging bacterialresistance promote and protect public health. The goal of this study is to determine theprevalence of antimicrobial resistance (AMR) among Salmonella, Campylobacter, E.coli and Enterococcus isolated from retail samples of chicken, turkey, beef and pork andfrom Enterococcus, Vibrio, Aeromonas and lactose fermenting bacteria from seafoodpurchased from grocery stores in Texas and Oklahoma using standardized methods socomparisons can be made to other national locations participating in the NARMS foodsurveillance program. Achieving this goal will contribute to our understanding of theburden and magnitude of antibiotic resistant bacteria in retail meat, poultry and seafoodproducts distributed and sold to consumers in this region that comprises approximately10% of the population of the United States. Specifically, the results of this project willprovide the FDA-CVM with isolates and sequencing data (whole genome sequencing)from important public health enteric bacteria, helping to conduct informed riskassessments on antimicrobial resistance (AMR) in animal products. During each year ofthe Cooperative Agreement, the Texas Tech University food microbiology laboratory willobtain food samples as follows: 120 bone-in, skin-on chicken, 120 ground turkey, 120ground beef, 120 ground pork or pork chops, 24 shrimp, 36 salmon, and 36 tilapia, allproduced under either conventional, organic or natural production systems. Sampleswill be collected monthly within 400 miles (6-hour drive) of Lubbock, Texas, includingsmall metro, urban, suburban and rural cities and towns as well as large, medium andsmall grocery stores, supermarkets, and independent grocers throughout the region thatwill add representativeness to the diverse sampling region. Collected samples will beprocessed using approved FDA-NARMS protocols for bacterial detection, and isolateswill be shipped monthly to FDA-CVM for AMR testing, while sequencing data will beused for further analysis and molecular determination of antimicrobial resistance. Theresults of this project will improve and increase educational activities and knowledge onantibiotic resistance as well as improve laboratory capacity on testing methodologiesand protocols used by government laboratories.