Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria

Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria


[music] Clean drinking water and a safe food supply are factors that contribute to good health. But what happens when antibiotics seep into the environment? University of Nebraska-Lincoln professor Xu Li says bacteria could become antibiotic-resistant. And if that happens to a pathogenic bacteria and a pathogenic bacteria ends up in a water sources or contaminate food and humans later consume those water and food, they could acquire antibiotic-resistant bacteria in their body and that becomes a potential health concern. Li studies the interaction of bacteria and antibiotics using UNL’s state of the art core facilities. Ultimate goal is to reduce the impact of those contaminants of emerging concerns for human health as well as the ecological health of the environment. Human and livestock waste are considered major sources of antibiotics in the environment. Understanding the relationship between antibiotics and bacteria could lead to new technologies. For example, bacteria capable of degrading antibiotics could be introduced into the waste treatment process. One potential application of those is enrich the bacteria in certain treatment processes so they can degrade antibiotics to a lower level or to a non-toxic format. Li has earned a prestigious National Science Foundation Career Award to continue his research. Funding will also support educational and outreach programs for livestock producers and rural students. Hopefully the research we are doing can really make an impact to the environment. [music]

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