Category Archives: Plasmids

Colistin Resistance Is Now Linked to Carbapenem Resistance: We Failed

For those just tuning in, a little over a month ago, the microbiology and public health world was rocked by the discovery of plasmid-borne colistin resistance: First, some background: polymyxins, including polymyxin E also known as colistin, are the last … Continue reading

Posted in Antibiotics, E. coli, Plasmids, Public Health, We're Really Fucked | 5 Comments

Plasmid-Borne Colistin Resistance Has Jumped Species and Maybe Hemispheres

Friday, I described the discovery of the gene mcr-1, which is a transmissible colistin resistance gene found on a bacterial plasmid (a plasmid is a mini-chromosome that can move from bacterium to bacterium). This is really bad news, since colistin … Continue reading

Posted in Antibiotics, E. coli, Plasmids, Salmonella, We're Really Fucked | 3 Comments

Last Line of Antimicrobial Defense Is Falling: Colistin Resistance Transmission

Actually, it’s sort of reached the rout stage. From China (don’t worry, I’ll translate from Science into English; boldface mine): Background: Until now, polymyxin resistance has involved chromosomal mutations but has never been reported via horizontal gene transfer. During a … Continue reading

Posted in Antibiotics, E. coli, Plasmids, We're Really Fucked | 9 Comments

What Does “Human Antibiotics” Mean?

Because, like Honey Badger, bacteria just don’t give a shit what they’re called. Recently, Tyson Food, the largest U.S. poultry producer, announced they’re changing their antibiotic use policies (boldface mine): Tyson Foods, Inc. (NYSE: TSN) said today it is striving … Continue reading

Posted in Agriculture, Antibiotics, Evolution, Plasmids

Rose At Dusk

With all of the New York City Ebola-related madness, here’s a quiet image for you (observed on 16th Street, Northwest D.C.): And a closeup:

Posted in DC, Plasmids | 1 Comment

The Colicin Plasmid Persistence Problem

Yesterday, I described an interesting paper that provides a potential solution to the plasmid persistence problem–how do bacterial mini-chromosomes that can jump from bacterium to bacterium survive? Not only does this paper shed some light on the ‘plasmid persistence problem’, … Continue reading

Posted in E. coli, Plasmids, Salmonella

Salmonella, E. coli, and Plasmids, Oh My! Solving the Plasmid Persistence Problem and the Virtues of Open Non-Equilibrium Models

Ed Yong has some very good coverage of a recent PNAS paper that describes how bacterial mini-chromosomes, known as plasmids and that often carry disease-related or antibiotic resistance genes, can jump from bacterium to bacterium at really high rates when … Continue reading

Posted in E. coli, Evolution, Plasmids, Salmonella | 3 Comments