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J Antimicrob Chemother. 2018 Feb 1;73(2):339-347. doi: 10.1093/jac/dkx397.

Molecular relatedness of ESBL/AmpC-producing Escherichia coli from humans, animals, food and the environment: a pooled analysis.

Author information

Institute for Risk Assessment Sciences (IRAS), Utrecht University, PO Box 80175, 3508 TD Utrecht, The Netherlands.
Department of Infectious Diseases and Immunology, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Utrecht University, PO Box 80165, 3508 TD Utrecht, The Netherlands.
Centre for Infectious Disease Control, National Institute for Public Health and the Environment, PO Box 1, 3720 BA Bilthoven, The Netherlands.
Department of Medical Microbiology, University Medical Centre Utrecht, PO Box 85500, 3508 GA Utrecht, The Netherlands.
Julius Centre for Health Sciences and Primary Care, University Medical Centre Utrecht, PO Box 85500, 3508 GA Utrecht, The Netherlands.
Wageningen Bioveterinary Research, PO Box 65, 8200 AB Lelystad, The Netherlands.
GD Animal Health, PO Box 9, 7400 AA Deventer, The Netherlands.
Institute for Sustainable Food Systems, Emerging Pathogens Institute and Animal Sciences Department, University of Florida, PO Box 100009, Gainesville, FL 32610, USA.



In recent years, ESBL/AmpC-producing Escherichia coli (ESBL/AmpC-EC) have been isolated with increasing frequency from animals, food, environmental sources and humans. With incomplete and scattered evidence, the contribution to the human carriage burden from these reservoirs remains unclear.


To quantify molecular similarities between different reservoirs as a first step towards risk attribution.


Pooled data on ESBL/AmpC-EC isolates were recovered from 35 studies in the Netherlands comprising >27 000 samples, mostly obtained between 2005 and 2015. Frequency distributions of ESBL/AmpC genes from 5808 isolates and replicons of ESBL/AmpC-carrying plasmids from 812 isolates were compared across 22 reservoirs through proportional similarity indices (PSIs) and principal component analyses (PCAs).


Predominant ESBL/AmpC genes were identified in each reservoir. PCAs and PSIs revealed close human-animal ESBL/AmpC gene similarity between human farming communities and their animals (broilers and pigs) (PSIs from 0.8 to 0.9). Isolates from people in the general population had higher similarities to those from human clinical settings, surface and sewage water and wild birds (0.7-0.8), while similarities to livestock or food reservoirs were lower (0.3-0.6). Based on rarefaction curves, people in the general population had more diversity in ESBL/AmpC genes and plasmid replicon types than those in other reservoirs.


Our 'One Health' approach provides an integrated evaluation of the molecular relatedness of ESBL/AmpC-EC from numerous sources. The analysis showed distinguishable ESBL/AmpC-EC transmission cycles in different hosts and failed to demonstrate a close epidemiological linkage of ESBL/AmpC genes and plasmid replicon types between livestock farms and people in the general population.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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