Sources of antibiotic resistance: zoonotic, human, environment

Ivone Vaz-Moreira, Catarina Ferreira, Olga C. Nunes, Célia M. Manaia*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


Antibiotic resistance is a global problem that must be managed under the One Health perspective. Retrospectively, it is assumed that microbial populations able to cope with compounds with antimicrobial activity and susceptible bacteria lived in equilibrium for a thousand years. This situation would change in the middle 1940s of the twentieth century when one of the most important revolutions of modern medicine started - the use of a natural antimicrobial compound, the penicillin, to treat infectious bacterial diseases. Over the years, the massive use of antibiotics in human and animal medicine, as well as in animal production for both growth promotion and infection prophylaxis/metaphylaxis, accelerated and shaped one of the most successful evolutionary case studies. As a result of an impressive combination of genome and community dynamics, bacteria with acquired antibiotic resistance are nowadays widespread across different environmental compartments (water, soil, wildlife) as well as in the human food chain (poultry, livestock, aquaculture, produce). Hence, the evolutionary success of these bacteria turned to represent a major threat to the human health. This review discusses some of the drivers and paths of antibiotic resistance dissemination across zoonotic, human, and environmental sources.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationAntibiotic drug resistance
EditorsJosé-Luis Capelo Martínez, Gilberto Igrejas
Number of pages28
ISBN (Electronic)9781119282549
ISBN (Print)9781119282525
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2019


  • Antibiotic usage
  • Commensal bacteria
  • Human-health threat
  • Soil
  • Wastewater


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