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May 1, 2017

Chromosomal 16S ribosomal RNA methyltransferase RmtE1 in Escherichia coli sequence type 448.

We identified rmtE1, an uncommon 16S ribosomal methyltransferase gene, in an aminoglycoside- and cephalosporin-resistant Escherichia coli sequence type 448 clinical strain co-harboring blaCMY-2. Long-read sequencing revealed insertion of a 101,257-bp fragment carrying both resistance genes to the chromosome. Our findings underscore E. coli sequence type 448 as a potential high-risk multidrug-resistant clone.

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April 24, 2017

Prevalence and molecular characterization of mcr-1-positive Salmonella strains recovered from clinical specimens in China.

The recently discovered colistin resistance element, mcr-1, adds to the list of antimicrobial resistance genes that rapidly erode the antimicrobial efficacy of not only the commonly used antibiotics but also the last-line agents of carbapenems and colistin. This study investigated the prevalence of the mobile colistin resistance determinant mcr-1 in Salmonella strains recovered from clinical settings in China and the transmission potential of mcr-1-bearing mobile elements harbored by such isolates. The mcr-1 gene was recoverable in 1.4% of clinical isolates tested, with the majority of them belonging to Salmonella enterica serotype Typhimurium. These isolates exhibited diverse pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE)…

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April 11, 2017

The recent emergence in hospitals of multidrug-resistant community-associated sequence type 1 and spa type t127 methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus investigated by whole-genome sequencing: Implications for screening.

Community-associated spa type t127/t922 methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) prevalence increased from 1%-7% in Ireland between 2010-2015. This study tracked the spread of 89 such isolates from June 2013-June 2016. These included 78 healthcare-associated and 11 community associated-MRSA isolates from a prolonged hospital outbreak (H1) (n = 46), 16 other hospitals (n = 28), four other healthcare facilities (n = 4) and community-associated sources (n = 11). Isolates underwent antimicrobial susceptibility testing, DNA microarray profiling and whole-genome sequencing. Minimum spanning trees were generated following core-genome multilocus sequence typing and pairwise single nucleotide variation (SNV) analysis was performed. All isolates were sequence…

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April 1, 2017

Complex routes of nosocomial vancomycin-resistant Enterococcus faecium transmission revealed by genome sequencing.

Vancomycin-resistant Enterococcus faecium (VREfm) is a leading cause of nosocomial infection. Here, we describe the utility of whole-genome sequencing in defining nosocomial VREfm transmission.A retrospective study at a single hospital in the United Kingdom identified 342 patients with E. faecium bloodstream infection over 7 years. Of these, 293 patients had a stored isolate and formed the basis for the study. The first stored isolate from each case was sequenced (200 VREfm [197 vanA, 2 vanB, and 1 isolate containing both vanA and vanB], 93 vancomycin-susceptible E. faecium) and epidemiological data were collected. Genomes were also available for E. faecium associated…

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April 1, 2017

Prevalence of mcr-1 in Escherichia coli and Klebsiella pneumoniae recovered from bloodstream infections in China: a multicentre longitudinal study.

Polymyxin antibiotics are used as last-resort therapies to treat infections caused by multidrug-resistant Gram-negative bacteria. The plasmid-mediated colistin resistance determinant MCR-1 has been identified in Enterobacteriaceae in China. We did this study to investigate the prevalence of the mcr-1 gene in clinical isolates from patients with bloodstream infections in China.Clinical isolates of Escherichia coli and Klebsiella pneumoniae were collected from patients with bloodstream infections at 28 hospitals in China, then screened for colistin resistance by broth microdilution and for the presence of the mcr-1 gene by PCR amplification. We subjected mcr-1-positive isolates to genotyping, susceptibility testing, and clinical data analysis.…

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March 1, 2017

A phage-like IncY plasmid carrying the mcr-1 gene in Escherichia coli from a pig farm in China.

We report here a new type of plasmid that carries the mcr-1 gene, the pMCR-1-P3 plasmid, harbored in an Escherichia coli strain isolated from a pig farm in China. pMCR-1-P3 belongs to the IncY incompatibility group and is a phage-like plasmid that contains a large portion of phage-related sequences. The backbone of this plasmid is different from that of other mcr-1-carrying plasmids reported previously. Copyright © 2017 American Society for Microbiology.

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February 2, 2017

Toward a complete North American Borrelia miyamotoi genome.

Borrelia miyamotoi, of the relapsing-fever spirochete group, is an emerging tick-borne pathogen causing human illness in the northern hemisphere. Here, we present the chromosome, eight extrachromosomal linear plasmids, and a draft sequence for five circular and one linear plasmid of a Borrelia miyamotoi strain isolated from an Ixodes sp. tick from Connecticut, USA. Copyright © 2017 Kingry et al.

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February 1, 2017

IncFIIk plasmid harbouring an amplification of 16S rRNA methyltransferase-encoding gene rmtH associated with mobile element ISCR2.

To investigate the resistance mechanisms and genetic support underlying the high resistance level of the Klebsiella pneumoniae strain CMUL78 to aminoglycoside and ß-lactam antibiotics.Antibiotic susceptibility was assessed by the disc diffusion method and MICs were determined by the microdilution method. Antibiotic resistance genes and their genetic environment were characterized by PCR and Sanger sequencing. Plasmid contents were analysed in the clinical strain and transconjugants obtained by mating-out assays. Complete plasmid sequencing was performed with PacBio and Illumina technology.Strain CMUL78 co-produced the 16S rRNA methyltransferase (RMTase) RmtH, carbapenemase OXA-48 and ESBL SHV-12. The rmtH- and blaSHV-12-encoding genes were harboured by a…

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February 1, 2017

Genetic characterization of mcr-1-bearing plasmids to depict molecular mechanisms underlying dissemination of the colistin resistance determinant.

To analyse and compare mcr-1-bearing plasmids from animal Escherichia coli isolates, and to investigate potential mechanisms underlying dissemination of mcr-1.Ninety-seven ESBL-producing E. coli strains isolated from pig farms in China were screened for the mcr-1 gene. Fifteen mcr-1-positive strains were subjected to molecular characterization and bioinformatic analysis of the mcr-1-bearing plasmids that they harboured.Three major types of mcr-1-bearing plasmids were recovered: IncX4 (~33 kb), IncI2 (~60 kb) and IncHI2 (~216-280 kb), among which the IncX4 and IncI2 plasmids were found to harbour the mcr-1 gene only, whereas multiple resistance elements including blaCTX-M, blaCMY, blaTEM, fosA, qnrS, floR and oqxAB were…

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January 24, 2017

Identification of IncA/C plasmid replication and maintenance genes and development of a plasmid multilocus sequence typing scheme.

Plasmids of incompatibility group A/C (IncA/C) are becoming increasingly prevalent within pathogenic Enterobacteriaceae They are associated with the dissemination of multiple clinically relevant resistance genes, including blaCMY and blaNDM Current typing methods for IncA/C plasmids offer limited resolution. In this study, we present the complete sequence of a blaNDM-1-positive IncA/C plasmid, pMS6198A, isolated from a multidrug-resistant uropathogenic Escherichia coli strain. Hypersaturated transposon mutagenesis, coupled with transposon-directed insertion site sequencing (TraDIS), was employed to identify conserved genetic elements required for replication and maintenance of pMS6198A. Our analysis of TraDIS data identified roles for the replicon, including repA, a toxin-antitoxin system; two…

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January 1, 2017

IncFII conjugative plasmid-mediated transmission of blaNDM-1 elements among animal-borne Escherichia coli strains.

This study aims to investigate the prevalence and transmission dynamics of the blaNDM-1 gene in animal Escherichia coli strains. Two IncFII blaNDM-1-encoding plasmids with only minor structural variation in the MDR region, pHNEC46-NDM and pHNEC55-NDM, were found to be responsible for the transmission of blaNDM-1 in these strains. The blaNDM-1 gene can be incorporated into plasmids and stably inherited in animal-borne E. coli strains that can be maintained in animal gut microflora even without carbapenem selection pressure. Copyright © 2016 American Society for Microbiology.

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November 21, 2016

Exploiting members of the BAHD acyltransferase family to synthesize multiple hydroxycinnamate and benzoate conjugates in yeast.

BAHD acyltransferases, named after the first four biochemically characterized enzymes of the group, are plant-specific enzymes that catalyze the transfer of coenzyme A-activated donors onto various acceptor molecules. They are responsible for the synthesis in plants of a myriad of secondary metabolites, some of which are beneficial for humans either as therapeutics or as specialty chemicals such as flavors and fragrances. The production of pharmaceutical, nutraceutical and commodity chemicals using engineered microbes is an alternative, green route to energy-intensive chemical syntheses that consume petroleum-based precursors. However, identification of appropriate enzymes and validation of their functional expression in heterologous hosts is…

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November 1, 2016

Plasmids from Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli strains with rare enterohemolysin gene (ehxA) subtypes reveal pathogenicity potential and display a novel evolutionary path.

Most Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli (STEC) strains associated with severe disease, such as hemolytic-uremic syndrome (HUS), carry large enterohemolysin-encoding (ehxA) plasmids, e.g., pO157 and pO103, that contribute to STEC clinical manifestations. Six ehxA subtypes (A through F) exist that phylogenetically cluster into eae-positive (B, C, F), a mix of eae-positive (E) and eae-negative (A), and a third, more distantly related, cluster of eae-negative (D) STEC strains. While subtype B, C, and F plasmids share a number of virulence traits that are distinct from those of subtype A, sequence data have not been available for subtype D and E plasmids. Here,…

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November 1, 2016

Survival and evolution of a large multidrug resistance plasmid in new clinical bacterial hosts.

Large conjugative plasmids are important drivers of bacterial evolution and contribute significantly to the dissemination of antibiotic resistance. Although plasmid borne multidrug resistance is recognized as one of the main challenges in modern medicine, the adaptive forces shaping the evolution of these plasmids within pathogenic hosts are poorly understood. Here we study plasmid-host adaptations following transfer of a 73?kb conjugative multidrug resistance plasmid to naïve clinical isolates of Klebsiella pneumoniae and Escherichia coli. We use experimental evolution, mathematical modelling and population sequencing to show that the long-term persistence and molecular integrity of the plasmid is highly influenced by multiple factors…

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November 1, 2016

IncHI2 plasmids are the key vectors responsible for oqxAB transmission among Salmonella species.

This study reported and analysed the complete sequences of two oqxAB-bearing IncHI2 plasmids harboured by a clinical S. Typhimurium strain and an S. Indiana strain of animal origin, respectively. Particularly, pA3T recovered from S. Indiana comprised the resistance determinants oqxAB, aac(6')Ib-cr, fosA3 and blaCTX-M-14 Further genetic screening of 63 oqxAB-positive Salmonella spp. isolates revealed that the majority carried IncHI2 plasmids, confirming that such plasmids play a pivotal role in dissemination of oqxAB in Salmonella spp.. Copyright © 2016, American Society for Microbiology. All Rights Reserved.

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