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The accelerated growth of finfish aquaculture has resulted in a series of developments detrimental to the environment and human health. The latter is illustrated by the widespread and unrestricted use of prophylactic antibiotics in this industry, especially in developing countries, to forestall bacterial infections resulting from sanitary shortcomings in fish rearing.

Antimicrobial compounds are commonly included in poultry diets for promoting of growth and control of diseases. The European Union banned feed grade antibiotic growth promoters, due to, not only cross-resistance, but also to the risk of possible drugs multiple resistances in human pathogenic bacteria. Only two such drug-related compounds are planned to remain in use (Gill, 1999; Bach Knudsen, 2001; Schwarz et al., 2001; Shane, 2001). Feeds containing no chemical additives are increasingly used in poultry nutrition.

An in vivo experiment was conducted to study the potential prebiotic effects of mushroom and herb polysaccharide extracts, Lentinus edodes extract (LenE), Tremella fuciformis extract, and Astragalus membranaceus Radix extract, on chicken growth and the cecal microbial ecosystem, as compared with the antibiotic Apramycin (APR). This investigation was carried out in terms of a dose-response study. The chickens were naturally infected with avian Mycoplasma gallisepticum prior to the experiment.

Surveillance of bacterial susceptibility to five antimicrobial agents was performed during a 1-year period in and around four freshwater fish farms situated along a stream in western Denmark. Besides assessing the levels of antibiotic resistance among the culturable fraction of microorganisms in fish, water, and sediment samples, two major fish pathogens (88 Flavobacterium psychrophilum isolates and 134 Yersinia ruckeri isolates) and 313 motile Aeromonas isolates, representing a group of ubiquitous aquatic bacteria, were isolated from the same samples.

We determined the association between the use of the glycopeptide antibiotic avoparcin as a growth promoter and the occurrence of Enterococcus faecium (VREF) with high-level resistance to vancomycin (MIC ≥ 64 μg ml−1) on poultry and pig farms. The investigations were conducted as retrospective cohort studies, where groups of farms exposed or not exposed to avoparcin between September 1994 and April 1995 were compared.

This segment of Zee Business brings you latest information on India's farmed chickens dosed with antibiotics, says expert. Watch this clip to know more.

Is your love for red and processed meat getting you into trouble? The World Health Organisation seems to think so. It has released a report stating that consumption of red and processed meat is linked to cancer of the stomach, colon and pancreas. But is a renouncement of meat the answer? Nutritionists differ, claiming that not all meat proteins can be replicated by plant products. On Agenda, we debate an altered Hamlet dilemma - to eat or not to eat, that is the question!