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ARS Home » Northeast Area » Beltsville, Maryland (BARC) » Beltsville Agricultural Research Center » Animal Biosciences & Biotechnology Laboratory » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #370201

Research Project: Non-antibiotic Strategies to Control Enteric Diseases of Poultry

Location: Animal Biosciences & Biotechnology Laboratory

Title: Strategic priorities for research on antibiotic alternatives in animal agriculture-Results from an expert workshop

item KURT, TIM - Foundation For Food And Agriculture Research
item WONG, NORA - Pew Charitable Trusts
item FOWLER, NORA - National Pork Board
item Gay, Cyril
item Lillehoj, Hyun
item PLUMMER, PAUL - Iowa State University
item SCOTT, MORGAN - Texas A&M University
item HOELZER, KARIN - Pew Charitable Trusts

Submitted to: Frontiers in Veterinary Science
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 11/14/2019
Publication Date: 11/29/2019
Citation: Kurt, T., Wong, N., Fowler, N., Gay, C.G., Lillehoj, H.S., Plummer, P., Scott, M., Hoelzer, K. 2019. Strategic priorities for research on antibiotic alternatives in animal agriculture-Results from an expert workshop. Frontiers in Veterinary Science.

Interpretive Summary: Antibiotics are critical tools to promote human and animal health, yet their efficacy is increasingly threatened by antibiotic resistance. Any exposure to antibiotics can select for resistant bacteria; therefore, their use in all settings must be carefully managed according to the report by the World Health Organization (2015). Antimicrobial drugs (“antibiotics”), as defined by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration have been used in animal agriculture to prevent, treat and control disease for over 60 years. However, there is an increasing urgency in developing alternatives to animal antibiotics that include a wide variety of phytochemicals and essential oils, pre- and probiotics, veterinary biologics, enzymes, antimicrobial peptides, immunomodulators, metals, minerals and similar products. While many of these alternatives enhance animal health and thus reduce the need for antibiotics, it is generally accepted that the antibiotic alternatives currently available cannot fully replace antibiotics for the prevention, control or treatment of disease. The need for effective alternatives that can more predictably prevent, treat and control disease has remained largely unmet. To develop a policy paper on funding decisions by the public and private sector funding agencies to support for research on antibiotic alternatives in animal agriculture, establishing reliable criteria for research prioritization is needed to ensure limited resources are dedicated to the most promising and impactful research areas and potential candidates. Meeting was convened to gather the experts in animal agriculture in the areas of research and policy making and this manuscript summarizes the outcomes of an expert workshop organized to address this need.

Technical Abstract: The emergence, spread and expansion of antibiotic resistance and increasing restrictions on the use of antibiotics in animal agriculture have created a need for efficacious alternatives that remains unmet. Prioritizing research needs in the development of alternatives is key to ensuring that scarce research resources are dedicated to the most promising approaches. However, frameworks to enable a consistent, systematic and transparent evaluation of antibiotic alternative candidates are lacking. Here, we present such an evaluation framework.