Are Antibiotics Making Wildlife Sick?


Scientists who are researching animals’ resistance to illnesses have discovered that human actions influence them in various ways, other than hunting or global warming.

A trace of the super bugs that proved to be resistant to antibiotics was found in the Arctic areas, respectively in the feces of five polar bears, which can only be the cause of human activity, since the polar bears were known to have a low bacterial variety.

Previously, tests were done on feces prevailed from foxes, dogs, deer and cats and they showed a high presence of antibiotic resistant genes. The analysis on polar bears leaded by the Tromso University in Norway is aiming to establish if the new genes have a natural origin which caused them to become resistant to antibiotics or they have developed their structure as a cause of human influence.

One of the conclusions the researchers have reached so far is that the variety of bacteria is significantly lower in the case of carnivores in comparison with herbivores. The five polar bears that were part of the up-mentioned study live in an area which is not highly populated by humans. Trine Grad, from the University of Tromso affirmed this is a good occasion to study the influence of humans on the ecosystem.

Source: sciencedaily


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