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Clin Infect Dis. 1997 Jan;24 Suppl 1:S9-16.

The population genetics of antibiotic resistance.

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Department of Biology, Emory University, Atlanta, Georgia 30322, USA.


Mathematical models are used to ascertain the relationship between the incidence of antibiotic treatment and the frequency of resistant bacteria in the commensal flora of human hosts, as well as the rates at which these frequencies would decline following a cessation of antibiotic use. Recent studies of the population biology of plasmid-encoded and chromosomal antibiotic resistance are reviewed for estimates of the parameters of these models and to evaluate other factors contributing to the fate of antibiotic-resistant bacteria in human hosts. The implications of these theoretical and empirical results to the future of antibacterial chemotherapy are discussed.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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