Reducing antibiotic resistance with monoglycerides and free fatty acids
Antimicrobials have been used in animal feed for about 70 years to treat diseases, boost growth and obtain improvement in productivity (FAO 2018). Use of antibiotics to promote animal growth has been banned in European Union (EU) since January 1, 2006. Europe has done it and USA is in progress. Antimicrobial resistance remains a serious threat to public health worldwide. European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control, Stockholm, 2017 (ECDC 2017) from many European countries is reported that high percentages of isolates with resistance to key antimicrobial groups still exist which shows great concern and represent a serious threat to patient safety. Overview of the annual morbidity and mortality of antibiotic-resistant infections in the United States, estimating their number at approximately 2 million and the number of death associated with these infections at 23,000 (CDC 2013). Antibiotic Growth Promoters are still used as feed additives in countries outside EU. A radical rethinking of policies to reduce antibiotic consumption and resistant is necessary worldwide.
As global population has been increasing, livestock production must be increased significantly to overcome the high demand. Europe was the first major market where restricted use of antibiotics in meat and poultry production. Furthermore, the consumer interest in meat and poultry products either without the use of antibiotics or restricted antibiotic use has increased. Non-Antibiotic Growth Promoters (NAGPs) has been replacing to Antibiotic Growth Promoters (AGP) due to no risk for bacterial resistance and undesired residues in animal production. Additionally, NAGPs are helping to reduce environmental emissions with the main emphasis on phytogenic, organic acids, probiotics, prebiotics, fatty acids and some trace minerals as well.
Bacterial pathogens (Gram-negative/ positive) of medical importance such as Escheria coli and Enterococci are a common cause of healthcare-associated infection, which could be able to survive and persist for long periods in the hospital environment and they are present in animal gut which are able to develop high-level resistance to antimicrobial. Based on ECDC report (2017) these two bacteria are well spread in Europe:
Escherichia coli which is one of the most frequent infections worldwide requires close attention regarding antibiotic resistance as the percentage of isolates resistant to commonly-used antibiotics continues to increase throughout Europe. The highest resistance percentages were reported from southern and south-eastern Europe.
Enterococcus faecium resistant is becoming common specially reported in countries in eastern and southeastern Europe and in Ireland. However, a significant increase in the percentage of resistance to faecium isolates was observed in countries reporting comparatively high resistance percentage.