FDA Committee Advises Against Human Antibiotic Use in Cattle

FDA advisory committee believes human antibiotic use in cattle could create dangerous antibiotic resistance.

Published on: Sep 28, 2006

The Veterinary Medicine Advisory Committee of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) disagreed with the claim of an antibiotic manufacturer that its product did not pose a health threat to humans. The committee indicated that use of the cattle antibiotic cefquinome, produced by Intervet, could result in resistant E. coli and Salmonella bacteria, as resistance to this and similar antibiotics have appeared in use in Europe.

"Several of the committee members raised concerns about the possible widespread use of the drug not only in cattle but in other species" said Wood. "Without basic safeguards in place—controls on extra-label use, monitoring of quantities of drugs used, and adequate support for monitoring the development of resistance—you can't even consider using critically important human drugs in food animals."

The committee's recommendations are not binding and will be submitted to the FDA for further consideration. If the FDA rejects the committee's advice against the use of cefquinome in cattle, the drug will be approved for use.