Multidrug-resistant (MDR) Acinetobacter baumannii infections are of particular concern within medical treatment facilities, yet the gene assemblages that give rise to this phenotype remain poorly characterized. In this study, we tested 97 clinical A. baumannii isolates collected from military treatment facilities (MTFs) from 2003 to 2009 by using a molecular epidemiological approach that enabled for the simultaneous screening of 236 antimicrobial resistance genes. Overall, 80% of the isolates were found to be MDR, each strain harbored between one and 17 resistant determinants, and a total of 52 unique resistance determinants or gene families were detected which are known to confer resistance to β-lactam (e.g., blaGES-11, blaTEM, blaOXA-58), aminoglycoside (e.g., aphA1, aacC1, armA), macrolide (msrA, msrB), tetracycline [e.g., tet(A), tet(B), tet(39)], phenicol (e.g., cmlA4, catA1, cat4), quaternary amine (qacE, qacE-1), streptothricin (sat2), sulfonamide (sul1, sul2), and diaminopyrimidine (dfrA1, dfrA7, dfrA19) antimicrobial compounds. Importantly, 91% of the isolates harbored blaOXA-51-like carbapenemase genes (including six new variants), 40% harbored the blaOXA-23 carbapenemase gene, and 89% contained a variety of aminoglycoside resistance determinants with up to six unique determinants identified per strain. Many of the resistance determinants were found in potentially mobile gene cassettes; 45% and 7% of the isolates contained class 1 and class 2 integrons, respectively. Combined, the results demonstrate a facile approach that supports a more complete understanding of the genetic underpinnings of antimicrobial resistance to better assess the load, transmission, and evolution of MDR in MTF-associated A. baumannii.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Pharmacology (medical)
- Infectious Diseases