Thematic Lines

Antimicrobial Resistance in plant-based food production systems

This research line aims to identify emergence and spread of antimicrobial-resistant (AMR) bacteria and/or resistance determinants in different production systems. The production environment and fresh fruit and vegetables can be contaminated by AMR bacteria (including resistance determinants and mobile genetic elements) deriving from various environmental sources, such as effluents from wastewater treatment plants from urban and hospitals, and food industries (e.g. slaughterhouses and food processing plants). Current research monitors the environmental contamination with AMR bacteria and tracks the routes of spread to fresh produce as once the production environment gets contaminated, AMR bacteria can spread throughout the food chain and eventually constitute a possible threat to public health.