Epidemiology of antimicrobial-resistant Escherichia coli carriage in sympatric humans and livestock in a rapidly urbanizing city uri icon


  • There are substantial limitations in understanding of the distribution of antimicrobial resistance (AMR) in humans and livestock in developing countries. This papers present the results of an epidemiological study examining patterns of AMR in Escherichia coli isolates circulating in sympatric human (n = 321) and livestock (n = 633) samples from 99 households across Nairobi, Kenya. E. coli isolates were tested for susceptibility to 13 antimicrobial drugs representing nine antibiotic classes. High rates of AMR were detected, with 47.6% and 21.1% of isolates displaying resistance to three or more and five or more antibiotic classes, respectively. Human isolates showed higher levels of resistance to sulfonamides, trimethoprim, aminoglycosides and penicillins compared with livestock (P<0.01), while poultry isolates were more resistant to tetracyclines (P = 0.01) compared with humans. The most common co-resistant phenotype observed was to tetracyclines, streptomycin and trimethoprim (30.5%). At the household level, AMR carriage in humans was associated with human density (P<0.01) and the presence of livestock manure (P=0.03), but keeping livestock had no influence on human AMR carriage (P>0.05). These findings revealed a high prevalence of AMR E. coli circulating in healthy humans and livestock in Nairobi, with no evidence to suggest that keeping livestock, when treated as a single risk factor, contributed significantly to the burden of AMR in humans, although the presence of livestock waste was significant. These results provide an understanding of the broader epidemiology of AMR in complex and interconnected urban environments. (C) 2019 The Author(s). Published by Elsevier B.V.

publication date

  • 2019
  • 2019

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