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ARS Home » Northeast Area » Beltsville, Maryland (BARC) » Beltsville Agricultural Research Center » Environmental Microbial & Food Safety Laboratory » Research » Research Project #441625

Research Project: Antimicrobial Resistance in Surface Waters: Pilot Environmental Monitoring and Quantification Effort (Beltsville)

Location: Environmental Microbial & Food Safety Laboratory

Project Number: 8042-42610-001-007-I
Project Type: Interagency Reimbursable Agreement

Start Date: Dec 15, 2021
End Date: Sep 30, 2022

Antibiotic resistant foodborne pathogens are an emerging public health threat. One Health approaches, to integrate, human, animal, and environmental science methodologies, can provide a more diverse perspective to mitigate the threat of antibiotic resistance. Our work here proposes to evaluate methods to recovery and identify antibiotic-resistant Escherichia coli from surface waters (rivers, streams). The objective is to conduct initial method development for detection and quantification of bacterial and antimicrobial resistance E. coli to identify and evaluate several quantitative methods of different types of antibiotic resistant E. coli. Agricultural Research Service will work in collaboration with National Antimicrobial Resistance Monitoring System (NARMS) partners Food and Drug Administration and Environmental Protection Agency as part of the FY22 methods assessment portion of Phase 1. Phase 1 of development of the NARMS Environmental Surface Water Programs will focus on evaluation and validation of laboratory methods and protocols as well as preliminary methods comparisons.

Food and Drug Administration and Agricultural Research Service jointly agree to develop and evaluate methods for the detection and quantification of antimicrobial resistant Escherichia coli and Enterococcus spp, for the purpose of monitoring selected antibiotic resistance phenotypes and genotypes. These methods include various membrane filtration, chromogenic substrate, and direct plating assays to optimize the quantitative recovery and detection of antibiotic resistant bacteria from surface waters. These data will advance the National Antimicrobial Resistance Monitoring System environmental monitoring program objectives by compiling and developing standardized protocols for detection of antibiotic resistant E. coli and Enterococci.