Table of Contents

Volume 533 Number 7602 pp145-284

12 May 2016

About the cover

Pampas de San Juan de Miraflores, a poor peri-urban shanty town in Lima, Peru. Mapping the distribution and dissemination of antibiotic resistance genes is a public health priority. Gautam Dantas and colleagues have characterized the bacterial community structure and resistance gene exchange networks from two low-income Latin American communities — a rural village of subsistence farmers 35 km south of San Salvador, El Salvador and a shanty town in the desert hills about 15 km southwest of Lima, Peru. Using functional genomics and whole-metagenome sequencing of hundreds of interconnected human faecal and environmental samples, the authors find that resistomes across habitats are generally structured by bacterial phylogeny along ecological gradients, but that key resistance genes can cross these boundaries. They also assess the usefulness of excreta management protocols in the prevention of resistance gene dissemination. Collectively, this work lays the foundation for quantitative risk assessment and surveillance of antibiotic resistance gene transmission across diverse environments. Cover: Sebastian Castañda/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

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