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Prevalence of Antibiotic Resistance Genes among Human Gut-Derived Bifidobacteria.


ABSTRACT: The microbiota of the human gastrointestinal tract (GIT) may regularly be exposed to antibiotics, which are used to prevent and treat infectious diseases caused by bacteria and fungi. Bacterial communities of the gut retain a reservoir of antibiotic resistance (AR) genes, and antibiotic therapy thus positively selects for those microorganisms that harbor such genetic features, causing microbiota modulation. During the first months following birth, bifidobacteria represent some of the most dominant components of the human gut microbiota, although little is known about their AR gene complement (or resistome). In the current study, we assessed the resistome of the Bifidobacterium genus based on phenotypic and genotypic data of members that represent all currently recognized bifidobacterial (sub)species. Moreover, a comparison between the bifidobacterial resistome and gut metagenome data sets from adults and infants shows that the bifidobacterial community present at the first week following birth possesses a reduced AR arsenal compared to that present in the infant bifidobacterial population in subsequent weeks of the first year of life. Our findings reinforce the concept that the early infant gut microbiota is more susceptible to disturbances by antibiotic treatment than the gut microbiota developed at a later life stage. IMPORTANCE:The spread of resistance to antibiotics among bacterial communities has represented a major concern since their discovery in the last century. The risk of genetic transfer of resistance genes between microorganisms has been extensively investigated due to its relevance to human health. In contrast, there is only limited information available on antibiotic resistance among human gut commensal microorganisms such as bifidobacteria, which are widely exploited by the food industry as health-promoting microorganisms or probiotic ingredients. In the current study, we explored the occurrence of antibiotic resistance genes in the genomes of bifidobacteria and evaluated their genetic mobility to other human gut commensal microorganisms.

SUBMITTER: Duranti S 

PROVIDER: S-EPMC5244288 | BioStudies | 2017-01-01

REPOSITORIES: biostudies

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