The close contact of pets with humans provides excellent opportunities for interspecies transmission of resistant bacteria and their resistance genes in either direction. Infections in humans due to antimicrobial resistant bacteria originating from pets are becoming a concern.
The PET-Risk consortium evaluated the frequency and the public health importance of the sharing of resistant bacteria between dogs, cats and humans living in close contact.
How was this done?
- Study case enrolment – Dogs, cats and humans living in contact were recruited. The enrolment of participants took place in Portugal and the United Kingdom.
- Sharing of bacteria – The samples collected from companion animals and their owners were used to evaluate the presence of multi-resistant bacteria as well as the occurrence of transmission between humans and animals.
- Risk analysis – Established control measures that might help to limit the dissemination of resistant bacteria from companion animals.
What questions were answered?
- Is there transmission of similar bacteria and/or antibiotic resistance genes to humans during companion animal with UTI? NO
- Is there transmission of similar bacteria and/or antibiotic resistance genes to humans during companion animal with SSTI? YES
- What is the extent of the risk of human colonization? As far as we have learned it exists but is LOW!
- Does the transfer of antimicrobial resistance from companion animals to humans in contact occur more frequently during animal infection? YES
- Which types of infection promote a higher risk of transmission, skin and soft tissue infections (SSTIs) or urinary tract infections (UTIs)? SSTIs
- What measures are advised to control the transfer of antimicrobial resistance from companion animals to humans in contact? Wash hands after contact with your pet if is sick with a resistant bacteria and under antimicrobial treatment, were gloves for procedures, clean surfaces, avoid direct contact during the treatment (no kissing, no sleeping in the same bed).
- Constança Ferreira Pomba, University of Lisbon, Portugal (Coordinator)
- Stefan Schwarz, Friedrich-Loeffler-Institut, Germany
- Scott Weese, Ontario Veterinary College at the University of Guelph, Canada
- Anette Loeffler, The Royal Veterinary College, United Kingdom
- Vincent Perreten, University of Bern, Switzerland
- PET-Risk project website
- PET-Risk project on RVC research news
- Laboratory of Antibiotic Resistance website
- Worms & germs blog by project partner Professor Scott Weese
- Interview in the Telegraph 2021-07-10: Nightmare scenario: Potentially untreatable superbug being passed from dogs to owners
- MedicalResearch.com 2021-07-11: Pets can pass genes for antibiotic resistance to human infections
- EurekAlert! 2021-07-10: Resistance to last-resort antibiotic may be passing between pet dogs and their owners
- Journal of Veterinary Internal Medicine, 2020. Extended‐spectrum‐beta‐lactamases‐ and carbapenemase‐producing Enterobacteriaceae isolated from the gut of sick companion animals in Portugal
- Journal of Veterinary Internal Medicine, 2020. Plasmid‐mediated colistin resistance mcr‐1 gene harbored on multi‐drug resistant isolates from companion animals in Portugal
- Chapter in Advances in Animal Health, Medicine and Production, 2020. The Public Health Risk of Companion Animal to Human Transmission of Antimicrobial Resistance During Different Types of Animal Infection
- Chapter in Advances in Animal Health, Medicine and Production, 2020. The Gut Microbiome and Antimicrobial Resistance in Companion Animals
- Chapter in Advances in Animal Health, Medicine and Production, 2020. Antimicrobial Resistance Trends in Dogs and Cats with Urinary Tract Infection
- Microbial Drug Resistance, 2020. Sharing of Clinically Important Antimicrobial Resistance Genes by Companion Animals and Their Human Household Members
- Microorganisms, 2020. Genes on the Move: In Vitro Transduction of Antimicrobial Resistance Genes between Human and Canine Staphylococcal Pathogens
- Veterinary Microbiology, 2019. Clonal relatedness of Proteus mirabilis strains causing urinary tract infections in companion animals and humans
- Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy, 2019. Emergence of Escherichia coli ST131 H30/H30-Rx subclones in companion animals
- Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy, 2019. Klebsiella pneumoniae causing urinary tract infections in companion animals and humans: population structure, antimicrobial resistance and virulence genes