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Front. Vet. Sci. | doi: 10.3389/fvets.2019.00131

Antimicrobial use and antimicrobial resistance indicators - integration of farm-level surveillance data from broiler chickens and turkeys in British Columbia, Canada

 Agnes Agunos1*, Sheryl P. Gow1, David F. Leger1,  Carolee A. Carson1, Anne E. Deckert1,  Angelina L. Bosman1,  Daleen Loest1, Rebecca J. Irwin1 and Richard J. Reid-Smith1
  • 1Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC), Canada

Using data from a Canadian Integrated Program for Antimicrobial Resistance Surveillance (CIPARS), we aimed to describe trends in antimicrobial use (AMU) in broiler chickens and turkeys, to compare AMU across species, to compare with trends in antimicrobial resistance (AMR), and to assess the effects of various AMU/AMR units of measurement (metrics and indicators) on data integration. Data on AMU/AMR in enteric bacteria, collected from 2013 to 2017 from broiler chickens (n=143 flocks) and turkeys (n=145) were used. In broiler chickens, the total AMU in milligrams/population correction unit (mg/PCU) decreased by 6%, the number (n) of defined daily doses for animals using Canadian standards (nDDDvetCA) per 1,000 broiler chicken-days decreased by 12%, and nDDDvetCA/PCU decreased by 6%. In turkeys, the mg/PCU decreased by 1%, whereas the nDDDvetCA/1,000 turkey-days and the nDDDvetCA/PCU increased by 1% and 5%, respectively. The types of antimicrobial classes used in both species were similar. Using the frequency of flocks reporting use (i.e., number of flocks reporting use/number of flocks participating) as a measurement, the use of certain antimicrobials changed over time (e.g., Broilers, decreased cephalosporin use, virginiamycin use, emerging use of lincomycin-spectinomycin and avilamycin; Turkeys: increased trimethoprim-sulfonamides and macrolide use). The trends in resistance to specific antimicrobials paralleled the frequency and quantity of use (e.g., ceftriaxone use decreased - ceftriaxone resistance decreased, and gentamicin use increased - gentamicin resistance increased) in some situations, but not others (decreased fluoroquinolone use - increased ciprofloxacin resistance). AMR data were summarized using the AMR indicator index (AMR Ix). The most notable AMR Ix trend was the decrease in ceftriaxone AMR Ix among Escherichia coli (0.19 to 0.07); indicative of the success of the poultry industry action to eliminate the preventive use of third generation cephalosporins. Other trends observed were the increase in ciprofloxacin AMR Ix among Campylobacter from 0.23 to 0.41 and gentamicin AMR Ix among E. coli from 0.11 to 0.22, suggestive of the persistence/emergence of resistance related to previous and current AMU not captured in our surveillance timeframe. These data highlight the necessity of multiple AMU and AMR indicators for monitoring the impact of stewardship activities and interventions.

Keywords: metrics, indicators, Farm-level, surveillance, Canada

Received: 19 Jan 2019; Accepted: 08 Apr 2019.

Edited by:

Flavie Vial, Animal and Plant Health Agency (United Kingdom), United Kingdom

Reviewed by:

Luís P. Carmo, University of Bern, Switzerland
Sinead Quealy, Self-employed, Ireland
Juan J. Carrique-Mas, Oxford University Clinical Research Unit in Vietnam (OUCRU), Vietnam  

Copyright: © 2019 Agunos, Gow, Leger, Carson, Deckert, Bosman, Loest, Irwin and Reid-Smith. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

* Correspondence: Dr. Agnes Agunos, Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC), Guelph, Canada,