The emergence of antimicrobial-resistant microorganisms in both humans and food animals is a growing concern. Debate has centred on links between antimicrobial use in the production of food animals and the emergence of resistant organisms in the human population. Consequently, microbial risk assessment (MRA) is being used to facilitate scientific investigations of the risks related to the food chain, including quantification of uncertainty and prioritization of control strategies. MRA is a scientific tool that can be used to evaluate the level of exposure and the subsequent risk to human health relating to a specific organism or particular type of resistance. This paper reviews the recent applications of MRA in the area of antimicrobial resistance, and in particular, it focuses on the methods, assumptions and data limitations. Since MRA outputs are dependent on the quality of data inputs used in their development, we aim to promote the generation of good quality data by describing the properties that data should ideally possess for MRA and by highlighting the benefit of data generation specifically for inclusion in MRAs.
- antimicrobial-resistant microorganisms
- microbial risk assessment
- risk assessment