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Research Article Open Access
It is evident nowadays that soil-dwelling bacteria can develop resistance against certain antibiotics. In this perspective, the main objectives of this study were to evaluate the soils from a Chinese tea plantations and forests, which had not previously been exposed to antibiotics, but contained bacterial strains, which could actually subsist on the antibiotics for energy and nutrients, and to study the genetic traits for antibiotic resistance in these strains. Five bacterial isolates belonging to the Lysobacter, Variovorax, Pseudomonas, Chitinophaga, and Bradyrhizobium genera were identified. It was observed that highlevel multiple antibiotic resistances were common among these bacteria both before and after plasmid curing. The p4 and p5 isolates were remarkably resistant to β-lactams, whereas the t1, t5, and t9 isolates were resistant to tetracycline at both the concentrations used. The resistance genes tetC and blaPSE-1 were relatively widely distributed in these bacteria, whereas integrons were not found in any of the isolated strains. The antibiotic resistance of these five bacterial isolates may have been derived from plasmids or chromosomes.