"Pressure Rises to Stop Antibiotics in Agriculture"

When Missouri farmer Russ Kremer was gored by one of his boars, the infected wound would not respond to antibiotics. Doctors were mystified.

"The answer was flowing in the veins of the boar. The animal had been fed low doses of penicillin, spawning a strain of strep that was resistant to other antibiotics. That drug-resistant germ passed to Kremer.

Like Kremer, more and more Americans -- many of them living far from barns and pastures -- are at risk from the widespread practice of feeding livestock antibiotics. These animals grow faster, but they can also develop drug-resistant infections that are passed on to people. The issue is now gaining attention because of interest from a new White House administration and a flurry of new research tying antibiotic use in animals to drug resistance in people."

Margie Mason and Martha Mendoza report for the Associated Press December 28, 2009.


Source: AP, 12/29/2009