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Researchers Report First Evidence of ESBL Producing E. coli in US Retail Meat

24 September 2018

US - A new study using antimicrobial susceptibility testing and whole genome sequencing to test extended spectrum beta lactamase (ESBL) producing E. coli isolated from cattle for food production and from various retail meat products has shown that all were resistant to at least three antimicrobial classes.


Microbial Drug Resistance (MDR) is an international, peer-reviewed journal covering the global spread and threat of multi-drug resistant clones of major pathogens that are widely documented in hospitals and the scientific community. [Photo: Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., publishers]

They also carried various types of CTX-M type ESBL genes, which are increasingly common in clinical patients worldwide and whose presence in food-producing animals and retail meat supplies might contribute to a greater incidence of infections.

These findings are reported in Microbial Drug Resistance, a peer-reviewed journal from Mary Ann Liebert, Inc. publishers. Click here to read the full-text open access article on the Microbial Drug Resistance website.

Daniel Tadesse, US Food and Drug Administration (FDA, Laurel, MD) and colleagues from the FDA, Texas Tech University (Lubbock, TX), and the US Department of Agriculture (USDA, Clay Center, NE) coauthored the article entitled Whole Genome Sequence Analysis of CTX-M Containing Escherichia coli Isolates from Retail Meats and Cattle in the United States. 

The ESBL E. coli isolates from meat samples, including chicken breast, ground turkey, ground beef, and pork chops, were collected by the National Antimicrobial Resistance Monitoring System (NARMS). Antimicrobial susceptibility testing was performed against a panel of 14 antimicrobials and 9 ß-lactam agents.

"This interesting and well-documented paper by Daniel Tadesse and colleagues provides convincing and alarming evidence of the 'arrival' to the dining room table of meat products contaminated by multidrug resistant E. coli, "says Editor-in-Chief Alexander Tomasz, PhD, The Rockefeller University, New York, NY. "This paper brings 'home' the seriousness of the issue of antimicrobial drug resistance."

TheCattleSite News Desk

Top image via Shutterstock



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