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Volume 32, Number 3, May-June 2001
Page(s) 215 - 222
DOI: 10.1051/apido:2001123

Apidologie 32 (2001) 215-222

Screening alternative antibiotics against oxytetracycline-susceptible and -resistant Paenibacillus larvae

Jan Kochansky, David A. Knox, Mark Feldlaufer and Jeffery S. Pettis

USDA ARS Bee Research Laboratory, Building 476, 10300 Baltimore Avenue, Beltsville, MD 20705-2350, USA

(Received 16 June 2000; revised 11 December 2000; accepted 15 February 2001)

Since resistance of the causative organism of American foulbrood, Paenibacillus larvae subsp. larvae, to oxytetracycline (OTC) is becoming widespread in the United States, we began a search for effective alternative antibiotics. We investigated the sensitivity of P. l. larvae to 27 antibiotics, which were primarily ones already registered with the US Food and Drug Administration for agricultural uses. Bacterial resistance to OTC also conferred resistance to other tetracyclines, although the level of resistance varied. The most active antibiotics screened that are currently used in agriculture were erythromycin, lincomycin, monensin, and tylosin. Rifampicin was by far the most active antibiotic tested, but since it is used against tuberculosis, registration of this material for agricultural use is unlikely.

Key words: Apis mellifera / Paenibacillus larvae larvae / antibiotic / resistance / American foulbrood

Correspondence and reprints: Jan Kochansky

© INRA, EDP Sciences, DIB, AGIB 2001