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Antibiotic Resistance Surveillance in Retail Food Specimens in Texas and Oklahoma


Antibiotic Resistance Surveillance in Retail Food Specimens in Texas and
Project Summary
The National Antimicrobial Resistance Monitoring System (NARMS), a surveillance
system established in 1996, tracks antibiotic resistance in enteric bacteria from humans,
retail meats, and food animals, and its different programs on emerging bacterial
resistance promote and protect public health. The goal of this study is to determine the
prevalence of antimicrobial resistance (AMR) among Salmonella, Campylobacter, E.
coli and Enterococcus isolated from retail samples of chicken, turkey, beef and pork and
from Enterococcus, Vibrio, Aeromonas and lactose fermenting bacteria from seafood
purchased from grocery stores in Texas and Oklahoma using standardized methods so
comparisons can be made to other national locations participating in the NARMS food
surveillance program. Achieving this goal will contribute to our understanding of the
burden and magnitude of antibiotic resistant bacteria in retail meat, poultry and seafood
products distributed and sold to consumers in this region that comprises approximately
10% of the population of the United States. Specifically, the results of this project will
provide the FDA-CVM with isolates and sequencing data (whole genome sequencing)
from important public health enteric bacteria, helping to conduct informed risk
assessments on antimicrobial resistance (AMR) in animal products. During each year of
the Cooperative Agreement, the Texas Tech University food microbiology laboratory will
obtain food samples as follows: 120 bone-in, skin-on chicken, 120 ground turkey, 120
ground beef, 120 ground pork or pork chops, 24 shrimp, 36 salmon, and 36 tilapia, all
produced under either conventional, organic or natural production systems. Samples
will be collected monthly within 400 miles (6-hour drive) of Lubbock, Texas, including
small metro, urban, suburban and rural cities and towns as well as large, medium and
small grocery stores, supermarkets, and independent grocers throughout the region that
will add representativeness to the diverse sampling region. Collected samples will be
processed using approved FDA-NARMS protocols for bacterial detection, and isolates
will be shipped monthly to FDA-CVM for AMR testing, while sequencing data will be
used for further analysis and molecular determination of antimicrobial resistance. The
results of this project will improve and increase educational activities and knowledge on
antibiotic resistance as well as improve laboratory capacity on testing methodologies
and protocols used by government laboratories.

Echeverry, Alejandro
Texas Tech University
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