Pantoea spp. are bacteria that are often detected in the environment and as symbionts of arthropods. They sporadically cause infections in humans and recently extended spectrum beta-lactamases (ESBL)- and carbapenemase-producing strains have started to emerge. In this study, we report the isolation and the complete genome sequence of a strain of Pantoea calida encoding the colistin-resistance gene mcr-9. The strain was isolated from a preterm newborn in a neonatal pathology ward. On clinical examination, his vital signs were normal and blood culture was negative. Rectal swab screening for ESBL-producing Enterobacterales allowed to isolate the bacterium, and a complete genome was obtained using both short and long read sequencing. The mcr-9 gene was found to be encoded on a IncHI2 superplasmid, which confers resistance to six classes of antibiotics, including beta lactams (ESBL). Despite the presence of mcr-9, the isolate retains susceptibility to colistin, which could be explained by the absence of compatible regulatory genes (qseBC) from the genome. The presence of the resistance gene is undetectable with the routine clinical procedures, that is, phenotypic tests. This suggests that a silent spread might be ongoing in the ward. To our knowledge, this is the first description of an MDR P. calida and of a Pantoea spp. encoding any mobile colistin resistance gene.

Isolation of a Colistin-Susceptible MDR Pantoea calida Harboring the mcr-9 Gene Suggests the Silent Spread of the Resistance Factor

Gaiarsa, Stefano
;
Merla, Cristina;Corbella, Marta;Mariani, Bianca;Zatelli, Michela;Sciabica, Irene;Castelli, Michele;Piazza, Aurora;Sassera, Davide;
2022-01-01

Abstract

Pantoea spp. are bacteria that are often detected in the environment and as symbionts of arthropods. They sporadically cause infections in humans and recently extended spectrum beta-lactamases (ESBL)- and carbapenemase-producing strains have started to emerge. In this study, we report the isolation and the complete genome sequence of a strain of Pantoea calida encoding the colistin-resistance gene mcr-9. The strain was isolated from a preterm newborn in a neonatal pathology ward. On clinical examination, his vital signs were normal and blood culture was negative. Rectal swab screening for ESBL-producing Enterobacterales allowed to isolate the bacterium, and a complete genome was obtained using both short and long read sequencing. The mcr-9 gene was found to be encoded on a IncHI2 superplasmid, which confers resistance to six classes of antibiotics, including beta lactams (ESBL). Despite the presence of mcr-9, the isolate retains susceptibility to colistin, which could be explained by the absence of compatible regulatory genes (qseBC) from the genome. The presence of the resistance gene is undetectable with the routine clinical procedures, that is, phenotypic tests. This suggests that a silent spread might be ongoing in the ward. To our knowledge, this is the first description of an MDR P. calida and of a Pantoea spp. encoding any mobile colistin resistance gene.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11571/1467169
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