We can track antibiotic resistance in wild bears’ tooth plaque

1 month ago 15
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By Charlotte Hartley

A brown bear in Sweden

A brown bear in Sweden

Ondrej Prosicky/Getty Images

The mouth bacteria of wild bears in Sweden hold a historical record of human antibiotic use and the rise of antibiotic resistance.

Antibiotics are used widely in medicine and agriculture, and can leak into the environment via untreated waste water. Wild animals can then encounter contaminated water, soil or food sources, and play a role in the evolution of antibiotic resistance.

To track changes in antibiotic resistance over time, Jaelle Brealey, then at Uppsala University in Sweden, and her colleagues sequenced the oral microbiomes …

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