Project

EFFORT: Managing the risks of drug resistant bacteria

Infections with antibiotic-resistant bacteria are hard to treat. With European partners, Wageningen University & Research studies the complex epidemiology and ecology of antimicrobial resistance in animals, the food chain and the environment, by using newly developed molecular and bio-informatics technologies. The focus lies on predicting and limiting the future evolution and exposure of humans to the antimicrobial resistance from animal origin. The results will support the decision-making process on risk management along the food chain.

EFFORT studies the complex epidemiology and ecology of antimicrobial resistance and the interactions between bacterial communities, commensals and pathogens in animals, the food chain and the environment.This will be conducted by a combination of epidemiological and ecological studies using newly developed molecular and bio-informatics technologies.

EFFORT will include an exposure assessment of humans from animal/environmental sources. The ecological studies on isolates will be verified by in vitro and in vivo studies. Moreover, real-life intervention studies will be conducted aiming at reducing the use of antimicrobials in veterinary practice. Focus will be on understanding the eco-epidemiology of antimicrobial resistance from animal origin and based on this, predicting and limiting the future evolution and exposure to humans of the most clinically important resistance by synthesising different sources of information in our prediction models. Through its results, the EFFORT research will provide scientific evidence and high quality data that will inform decision makers, the scientific community and other stakeholders about the consequences of AMR in the food chain, in relation to animal health and welfare, food safety and economic aspects. These results can be used to support political decisions and to prioritize risk management options along the food chain. The EFFORT consortium is made up of 20 partners from 10 European countries: Belgium, Bulgaria, Denmark, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Poland, Spain and Switzerland. The senior investigators leading this proposal bring together complementary strengths antimicrobial resistance, food safety, epidemiology of food borne pathogens and risk modelling, environmental epidemiology and microbial ecology, exposure assessment, veterinary microbiology, preventive molecular characterization of AMR, genetics and biology of DNA transfer mechanisms, whole genome sequencing for bacteria and economics of animal diseases

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