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Growth rate assays reveal fitness consequences of β-lactamases.


NON-TECHNICAL SUMMARY:Antibiotic resistance is a global human health problem. We partnered with Dignity Health Mercy Medical Center to study antibiotic resistance in clinical isolates. We tested whether growth rates, a sensitive assay used to measure the fitness of bacterial samples, correlate with a clinical test to measure antibiotic resistance. We found a strong correlation between these two methods suggesting that growth rates could be reliably applied to evolutionary studies of clinically relevant problems. Moreover, the sensitivity of the growth rates assay enabled us to identify fitness effects of specific antibiotic resistance genes.

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