First detection in Europe of the metallo-β-lactamase IMP-15 in clinical strains ofPseudomonas putidaandPseudomonas aeruginosa

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In a prospective study (2009–2011) in healthcare institutions from the Canary Islands (Spain), 6 out of 298 carbapenem non-susceptible Pseudomonas aeruginosa isolates produced a metallo-β-lactamase: four IMP-15, two VIM-2 (including one IMP-15-positive isolate) and one VIM-1. Multilocus sequence typing identified the single VIM-1-producing isolate as clone ST111 and two IMP-15-producing isolates as ST606, but, strikingly, bacterial re-identification revealed that the other three isolates (producing IMP-15 and/or VIM-2) were actually Pseudomonas putida. Further retrospective analysis revealed a very high prevalence (close to 50%) of carbapenem resistance in this environmental species. Hence, we report the simultaneous emergence in hospitals on the Canary Islands of P. putida and P. aeruginosa strains producing IMP-15, a metallo-β-lactamase not previously detected in Europe, and suggest an underestimated role of P. putida as a nosocomial reservoir of worrying transferable resistance determinants.

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