The incidence of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) in the region has increased dramatically over the past decade, with over 4,000 cases during this period. Recently, community-associated infections have surpassed healthcare-associated infections in incidence. Joan Casey, a doctoral student at Johns Hopkins, is leading the research at the EHI. We are currently completing analysis to determine whether animal feeding operations in the region are contributing to the disease burden, given the common use of antibiotics in animal feeds at large animal feeding operations, including concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOs) and concentrated animal operations (CAOs). Our first paper has been published in the peer-reviewed journal Epidemiology and Infection based on this work.
Casey JA, Curriero FC, Cosgrove SE, Nachman KE, Schwartz BS. High-density livestock Operations, crop field application of manure, and risk of community-associated methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus infection in Pennsylvania. JAMA Internal Medicine 2013 Sep 13.
Casey JA, Stewart WF, Cosgrove SE, Pollak J, Schwartz BS. A population-based study of the epidemiology and clinical features of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus infection in Pennsylvania 2001-2010. Epidemiology & Infection 2013 Jun;141(6):1166-79.