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Title: The effect of heavy metals on antibiotic resistance in the environment
Author: McCluskey, Seánín Marie
ISNI:       0000 0004 5362 8790
Awarding Body: University of Strathclyde
Current Institution: University of Strathclyde
Date of Award: 2014
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Antibiotic resistance is a significant clinical problem, with bacterial infections becoming increasingly difficult to treat. Efforts, such as reducing the use of antibiotics, have proved unsuccessful, and we now face the prospect of a future without antibiotics. The natural environment acts as a reservoir for resistance genes. The selection and maintenance of resistance could counteract clinical efforts to reduce antibiotic resistance. Heavy metals have been linked to antibiotic resistance by genetic mechanisms whereby metals potentially select for and maintain antibiotic resistance, even in the absence of the antibiotic itself. Here, the role of heavy metals in enhancing, or maintaining, antibiotic resistance in the environment is investigated. Background levels of metals in soil were found to correlate to antibiotic resistance gene abundances, implying the effect heavy metals in the environment have on antibiotic resistance is more intrinsic than anticipated. Using controlled microcosm studies, the influence of pollution levels on antibiotic resistance was further investigated.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available