Project Outline

OH-STAR, the One Health Selection and Transmission of Antimicrobial Resistance project

In this project we are identifying what drives acquisition of AMR in animals using E. coli as the exemplar bacterium and dairy cows and dogs as exemplar farmed and companion animals. We are testing whether AMR bacteria encountered by an animal as it interacts with the environment influences the AMR bacteria in its faeces, and/or whether early life antimicrobial use plays a part in selection of AMR bacteria in animals.

We are also testing whether reducing antimicrobial use in dairy cows actually does reduce AMR in the near-farm environment that is contaminated with their faeces. We are testing whether exercising in these contaminated near-farm environments influences the abundance of AMR bacteria in dogs, and whether there is any evidence of direct acquisition of AMR E. coli by dogs from near-farm environments, which might be brought into the home.

Finally, we are investigating whether the abundance of AMR in E. coli from human UTI reduces as less antimicrobial drugs are prescribed in primary care, whether living close to a farm affects the abundance of AMR in these UTI E. coli and whether there is direct evidence for E. coli carried by dogs or found in near-farm environments contaminated by cattle faeces causing UTIs in humans.

These interlaced studies will provide much needed data about management changes that might reduce AMR in animals and in humans. They are designed to address the fundamental question of whether zoonotic transmission is particularly significant as a driver of AMR in people relative to antimicrobial drug use in human health.

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