OXA-427, a new plasmid-borne carbapenem-hydrolysing class D β-lactamase in Enterobacteriaceae

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Abstract

Objectives:

To describe a novel plasmid-borne class D carbapenemase (CHDL) named OXA-427 identified in several Enterobacteriaceae clinical isolates from nine patients in one Belgian hospital.

Methods:

OXA-427-producing isolates were analysed by an electrochemical imipenem hydrolysis method (BYG Carba test), Carba NP test, conventional phenotypic assays and by molecular methods (PCR, whole sequencing of the OXA-427-encoding plasmid and cloning). The antimicrobial resistance profile of OXA-427 was analysed by expression of the cloned gene in Escherichia coli DH10B and J53.

Results:

Eleven OXA-427-producing Enterobacteriaceae isolates of various species were identified from clinical specimens of nine patients between March 2012 and June 2014. OXA-427 shares only 22%-29% amino acid identity with OXA-48-like enzymes and other acquired CHDL (e.g. OXA-23, -24/40 and -58 of Acinetobacter spp.). Conversely, it appeared closely related to the chromosomal class D β-lactamase of Aeromonas media, Aeromonas hydrophila and Aeromonas sobria (99%, 89% and 77% of identity, respectively). When expressed in E. coli, OXA-427 hydrolysed imipenem and conferred resistance to extended-spectrum cephalosporins (mostly ceftazidime), penicillins including temocillin, and reduced susceptibility to carbapenems. The blaOXA-427 gene was located in a 45 kb resistance island on a 177 kb IncA/C plasmid.

Conclusions:

OXA-427 is a novel CHDL most closely related to chromosomal class D β-lactamase of A. media WS. It confers resistance to penicillins, ceftazidime and aztreonam and in some instances to carbapenems. OXA-427, which is not detectable by classical molecular tests, caused a protracted outbreak in one university hospital over a 2 year period.

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