Tuesday, March 28, 2017
Cattle associated antibiotics disturb soil ecosystems.
A new study has shown that cattle associated antibiotics disturb soil ecosystems.Manure from cattle administered antibiotics drastically changes the bacterial and fungal make-up of surrounding soil, leading to ecosystem dysfunction, according to a Virginia Tech research team.Their findings were published in the Proceedings of the Royal Society B. The team analyzed soil samples from 11 dairy farms in the United States, and found that the amount of antibiotic resistant genes was 200 times greater in soil near manure piles compared with soil that wasn't. Furthermore, microbes with greater antibiotic-resistance showed higher stress levels. Soil microbial communities are important for sustaining ecosystem services such as climate regulation, soil fertility, and food production. Perturbations, such as antibiotic exposure, can have marked effects on soil microbes and these services. The development of antibiotic resistance can be an energy-sucker for a microorganism, and would explain why we've seen higher stress levels because microbes with greater antibiotic-resistance showed higher stress levels.