Selection for Resistance to a Glyphosate-Containing Herbicide in Salmonella enterica Does Not Result in a Sustained Activation of the Tolerance Response or Increased Cross-Tolerance and Cross-Resistance to Clinically Important Antibiotics
Evolution of bacterial tolerance to antimicrobials precedes evolution of resistance and may result in cross-tolerance, cross-resistance, or collateral sensitivity to other antibiotics. Transient exposure of gut bacteria to glyphosate, the world's most widely used herbicide, has been linked to the activation of the stress response and changes in susceptibility to antibiotics. In this study, we investigated whether chronic exposure to a glyphosate-based herbicide (GBH) results in resistance, a
... in resistance, a constitutive activation of the tolerance and stress responses, and cross-tolerance or cross-resistance to antibiotics. Of the 10 farm animal-derived clinical isolates of Salmonella enterica subjected to experimental evolution in increasing concentrations of GBH, three isolates showed stable resistance with mutations associated with the glyphosate target gene aroA and no fitness costs. Global quantitative proteomics analysis demonstrated activation of the cellular tolerance and stress response during the transient exposure to GBH but not constitutively in the resistant mutants. Resistant mutants displayed no cross-resistance or cross-tolerance to antibiotics. These results suggest that while transient exposure to GBH triggers cellular tolerance response in Salmonella enterica, this response does not become genetically fixed after selection for resistance to GBH and does not result in increased cross-tolerance or cross-resistance to clinically important antibiotics under our experimental conditions.