THE emergence of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) as a veterinary disease and the increasing prevalence of MRSA in humans were discussed at a seminar held at the Royal Society of Medicine (RSM) in London on October 26. Entitled ‘Killer Staph – just media hype or a real problem?’, the aim of the seminar, which was organised by the RSM’s Comparative Medicine Section, was to discuss recent research on MRSA and its current status in humans and animals.
The presentations, given by speakers from the medical and veterinary fields, highlighted that MRSA was a genuine problem, which could not be dismissed as media hype, and that collaboration between the medical and the veterinary professions was vital to help identify, control and treat infections.
Source of MRSA in animals
The question of where MRSA in animals came from was examined by Dr Andrew Waller of the Animal Health Trust (AHT), who noted that, although its incidence in animals was relatively low compared with the human situation, MRSA could cause serious disease and had been identified in a wide range of species, including poultry, dogs, cats, horses and cattle.
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