blaNDM genes confer carbapenem resistance and have been identified on transferable plasmids belonging to different incompatibility (Inc) groups. Here we present the complete sequences of four plasmids carrying a blaNDM gene, pKP1-NDM-1, pEC2-NDM-3, pECL3-NDM-1 and pEC4-NDM-6, from four clinical samples originating from four different patients. Different plasmids carry segments that align to different parts of the blaNDM region found on Acinetobacter plasmids. pKP1-NDM-1 and pEC2-NDM-3, from Klebsiella pneumoniae and Escherichia coli, respectively, were identified as type 1 IncA/C2 plasmids with almost identical backbones. Different regions carrying blaNDM are inserted in different locations in the antibiotic resistance island known as ARI-A and ISCR1 may have been involved in acquisition of blaNDM-3 by pEC2-NDM-3. pECL3-NDM-1 and pEC4-NDM-6, from Enterobacter cloacae and E. coli, respectively, have similar IncFIIY backbones but different regions carrying blaNDM are found in different locations. Tn3-derived Inverted-repeat Transposable Elements (TIME) appear to have been involved in acquisition of blaNDM-6 by pEC4-NDM-6 and the rmtC 16S rRNA methylase gene by IncFIIY plasmids. Characterisation of these plasmids further demonstrates that even very closely related plasmids may have acquired blaNDM genes by different mechanisms. These findings also illustrate the complex relationships between antimicrobial resistance genes, transposable elements and plasmids and provide insights into the possible routes for transmission of blaNDM genes amongst species of the Enterobacteriaceae family. Copyright © 2016, American Society for Microbiology. All Rights Reserved.
Journal: Antimicrobial agents and chemotherapy