The SAS proposals for participation in FP6 projects
are listed in blocks according to the FP6 priority theme structure

FP6 priority
1.1.5   Food Quality and Safety
Title of the proposal

Mobile antibiotic resistance genes and elements in digestive tract bacteria

Slovak Academy of Sciences, Institute of Animal Physiology
Soltesovej 4-6, 04001 Kosice, Slovak Republic
+421 55 6783121

Research subject for a potential FP6 project

Gene transfer is natural phenomenon allowing bacteria to better adapt to change of conditions in growth environment by acquiring a new genetic information coming from other bacteria. In the past decade the natural gene transfer have attracted big attention regarding the potential and actual risks associated with the release of genetically modified organisms into the environment. Much debate has revolved around the use of antibiotics in livestock production and the coincident development of resistant bacteria. Several authors proposed that resistant strains and resistence elements are spread from animal to human and that digestive tract of animals serves as reservoire of mobile resistance genes and elements contaminating human population. It can be proposed that in digestive tract, where cells contacts are very frequent due to high bacterial counts, horizontal gene transfer play an important role in the evolution and adaptation of bacteria. Especially rumen, due to lack of gut acidic barier, constitute a potentially important site for gene transfer as it is likely to receive a varied input of transient micro-organisms from the feed. The aim of the project is the study of antibiotic resistance profiles of bacteria from animals digestive tract, to analyse genetic resistance determinants and mobile gene elements participating in spreading of resistance determinants in digestive tract microbial ecosystem. The probability and frequency of antibiotic resistance determinants transfer between digestive tract bacteria and bacteria from other environments will be analyzed. Better understanding of natural gene transfer could eliminate risks provided by antibiotic resistance transfer on human health.

Recent international cooperation of the research team

Participation in 5RP project QLRT-1999-31455 ERCULE (European Rumen CiIiate Culture Collection)

Proposerīs relevant publications related to the research subject

Styriak, I., Pristas, P., Javorsky, P.: Lack of GATC sites in the genome of Streptococcus bovis bacteriophage F4. Res. Microbiol. 151, 2000, p. 285-289.

Fliegerova, K., Pazoutova, S., Pristas, P., Flint, H.J.: Highly Conserved DNA Sequence Present in Small Plasmids from Selenomonas ruminantium. Plasmid 44, 2000, p. 94-99.

Hermanova, A., Pristas, P., Molnarova, V., Fliegerova, K., Javorsky, P.: Plasmids of Selenomonas ruminantium and development of host-vector system. Folia Microbiol. 46 (4): 289-291 2001