Assessment of Zn and Cu in piglets' liver and kidney: impact in fecal Enterococcus spp.?

Environ Sci Pollut Res Int. 2024 Feb 21. doi: 10.1007/s11356-024-32495-8. Online ahead of print.ABSTRACTZinc and copper have been used as growth promotors in alternative to antibiotics in pig's diet. The aim was the ascertainment of the Zn and Cu concentrations in piglets' liver and kidney and their impact in the reduced susceptibility to Zn, Cu, and antibiotics in enterococci, used as microbiota biomarker. Zn and Cu were determined in the livers and kidneys of 43 piglets slaughtered in Portugal, by flame atomic absorption spectrometry. Enterococci were isolated from feces for determining the identification of species (E. faecalis, E. faecium, and Enterococcus spp.); susceptibility to vancomycin, ciprofloxacin, linezolid, tigecycline, ampicillin, imipenem, and metals; and Cu tolerance genes. In piglets with Zn and Cu high or toxic levels, enterococci had reduced susceptibility to ions, reinforced by the presence of Cu tolerance genes and by resistance to antibiotics. The study relevance is to show the relationship between these metals' levels and decreased susceptibility to Cu, Zn, and antibiotics by enterococci. From the results, it could be supposed that the piglets were being fed with high doses of Zn and Cu which could select more resistant bacteria to both antibiotics and metals that could spread to environment and humans.PMID:38381291 | DOI:10.1007/s11356-024-32495-8
Source: Environmental Science and Pollution Research International - Category: Environmental Health Authors: Source Type: research