Multidrug-resistant Klebsiella pneumoniae strains are one of the most prevalent causes of nosocomial infections and pose an increasingly dangerous public health threat. The lack of remaining treatment options has resulted in the utilization of older drug classes, including colistin. As a drug of last resort, the discovery of plasmid-mediated colistin resistance by mcr-1 denotes the potential development of pandrug-resistant bacterial pathogens. To address the emergence of the mcr-1 gene, 118 gram-negative Enterobacteriaceae isolated from clinical samples collected at Queen Sirikit Naval Hospital in Chonburi, Thailand were screened for colistin resistance using automated antimicrobial susceptibility testing and conventional PCR screening. Two K. pneumoniae strains, QS17-0029 and QS17-0161, were positive for mcr-1, and both isolates were sequenced to closure using short- and long-read whole-genome sequencing. QS17-0029 carried 16 antibiotic resistance genes in addition to mcr-1, including 2 carbapenemases, blaNDM-1 and blaOXA-232. QS17-0161 carried 13 antibiotic resistance genes in addition to mcr-1, including the extended-spectrum ß-lactamase blaCTX-M-55. Both isolates carried multiple plasmids, but mcr-1 was located alone on highly similar 33.9?Kb IncX4 plasmids in both isolates. The IncX4 plasmid shared considerable homology to other mcr-1-containing IncX4 plasmids. This is the first report of a clinical K. pneumoniae strain from Thailand carrying mcr-1 as well as the first strain to simultaneously carry mcr-1 and multiple carbapenemase genes (QS17-0029). The identification and characterization of these isolates serves to highlight the urgent need for continued surveillance and intervention in Southeast Asia, where extensively drug-resistant pathogens are being increasingly identified in hospital-associated infections.
Journal: Microbial drug resistance