In this study, we microbiologically evaluated antibiotic resistance and pathogenicity in livestock (swine) manure as well as its biologically stabilized products. One of new livestock manure stabilization techniques is ATAD (Autothermal Thermophilic Aerobic Digestion). Because of its high operation temperature (60–65°C), it has been speculated to have effective microbial risk control in livestock manure. This hypothesis was tested by evaluating microbial risk in ATAD-treated swine manure. Antibiotic resistance, multiple antibiotic resistance (MAR), and pathogenicity were microbiologically examined for swine manure as well as its conventionally stabilized (anaerobically fermented) and ATAD-stabilized products. In the swine manure and its conventionally stabilized product, antibiotic resistant (tetracycline-, kanamycine-, ampicillin-, and rifampicin-resistant) bacteria and the pathogen indicator bacteria were detected. Furthermore, approximately 2–5% of the Staphylococcus and Salmonella colonies from their selective culture media were found to exhibit a MAR-phenotypes, suggesting a serious level of microbe induced health risk. In contrast, after the swine manure was stabilized with a pilot-scale ATAD treatment for 3 days at 60–65°C, antibiotic resistant bacteria, pathogen indicator bacteria, and MAR-exhibiting pathogens were all undetected. These findings support the improved control of microbial risk in livestock wastes by ATAD treatment.

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