Carbapenemase-producing bacteria in companion animals: A public health concern on the horizon

Sam Abraham, Hui San Wong, John Turnidge, James R. Johnson, Darren J. Trott

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

52 Scopus citations


Clinical infections attributed to carbapenemase-producing bacteria are a pressing public health concern owing to limited therapeutic options and linked antimicrobial resistance. In recent years, studies have reported the emergence and spread of carbapenemase-producing Enterobacteriaceae and their public health impact. This has been closely followed by the global dissemination of highly resistant and virulent zooanthroponotic extraintestinal pathogenic Escherichia coli (ExPEC) ST131 clones. It has also been hypothesized that companion animals may act as a reservoir for Gram-negative multidrug-resistant pathogens in the community. Two recent reports have documented the emergence of carbapenemase-producing bacteria in companion animals. This phenomenon is of great concern because of the close contact between humans and their pets, and the potential for cross-species transmission. This scenario suggests a role for multifaceted control of Gram-negative multidrugresistant infections in companion animals. This short article addresses this issue and identifies steps that could facilitate this process.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numberdkt518
Pages (from-to)1155-1157
Number of pages3
JournalJournal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2014

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This study was conducted as part of our routine work. This material is based in part upon work supported by the Office of Research and Development, Medical Research Service, Department of Veterans Affairs (J. R. J.).

Funding Information:
S. A., H. S. W. and D. J. T. have received funding from Zoetis and Novartis in the past. J. R. J. has received research funds from Merck, Rochester Medical and Syntiron, and has patent applications for tests to detect E. coli clones. J. T.: none to declare.


  • Antibiotic resistance
  • Escherichia coli
  • NDM-1
  • OXA-48
  • ST131
  • UTIs
  • Urinary tract infections


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