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A trend analysis of antimicrobial resistance in commensal Escherichia coli from several livestock species in Belgium (2011–2014)

Hanon, Jean-Baptiste, Jaspers, Stijn, Butaye, Patrick, Wattiau, Pierre, Méroc, Estelle, Aerts, Marc, Imberechts, Hein, Vermeersch, Katie, Van der Stede, Yves
Preventive veterinary medicine 2015 v.122 no.4 pp. 443-452
Escherichia coli, ampicillin, animal health, antibiotic resistance, beef cattle, broiler chickens, ciprofloxacin, data collection, equations, feces, monitoring, nalidixic acid, regression analysis, slaughter, stakeholders, sulfamethoxazole, swine, tetracycline, veal calves, Belgium
A temporal trend analysis was performed on antimicrobial resistance data collected over 4 consecutive years (2011–2014) in the official Belgian antimicrobial resistance monitoring programme. Commensal Escherichia coli strains were isolated from faecal samples of four livestock categories (veal calves, young beef cattle, broiler chickens and slaughter pigs) and the trends of resistance profiles were analysed. The resistance prevalence remained high (>50%) during the study period for ampicillin in veal calves and chickens, for ciprofloxacin and nalidixic acid in chickens, for sulfamethoxazole in veal calves, chickens and pigs and for tetracycline in veal calves. Using logistic regression and Generalized Estimating Equation and after p value adjustment for multiple testing (Linear step-up method), statistically significant decreasing temporal trends were observed for several of the 11 tested antimicrobials in several livestock categories: in veal calves (10/11), in chickens (6/11) and in pigs (5/11). A significant increasing trend was observed for the prevalence of resistance to ciprofloxacin in chickens. Multi-resistance, considered as the resistance to at least three antimicrobials of different antibiotic classes, was observed in the four livestock categories but was significantly decreasing in veal calves, chickens and pigs. Overall, the prevalence of resistance and of multi-resistance was lowest in the beef cattle livestock category and highest in broiler chickens. These decreasing temporal trends of antimicrobial resistance might be due to a decrease of the total antimicrobial consumption for veterinary use in Belgium which was reported for the period between 2010 and 2013. The methodology and statistical tools developed in this study provide outputs which can detect shifts in resistance levels or resistance trends associated with particular antimicrobial classes and livestock categories. Such outputs can be used as objective evidence to evaluate the possible efficacy of measures taken by animal health authorities and stakeholders in the livestock sector to limit antimicrobial resistance occurrence.