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Antimicrob Agents Chemother. 2000 Apr;44(4):891-7.

Characterization of VIM-2, a carbapenem-hydrolyzing metallo-beta-lactamase and its plasmid- and integron-borne gene from a Pseudomonas aeruginosa clinical isolate in France.

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  • 1Service de Bactériologie-Virologie, Hôpital de Bicêtre, Assistance Publique/Hôpitaux de Paris, Faculté de Médecine Paris-Sud, 94275 Le Kremlin-Bicêtre, France.


Pseudomonas aeruginosa COL-1 was identified in a blood culture of a 39-year-old-woman treated with imipenem in Marseilles, France, in 1996. This strain was resistant to beta-lactams, including ureidopenicillins, ticarcillin-clavulanic acid, cefepime, ceftazidime, imipenem, and meropenem, but remained susceptible to the monobactam aztreonam. The carbapenem-hydrolyzing beta-lactamase gene of P. aeruginosa COL-1 was cloned, sequenced, and expressed in Escherichia coli DH10B. The deduced 266-amino-acid protein was an Ambler class B beta-lactamase, with amino acid identities of 32% with B-II from Bacillus cereus; 31% with IMP-1 from several gram-negative rods in Japan, including P. aeruginosa; 27% with CcrA from Bacteroides fragilis; 24% with BlaB from Chryseobacterium meningosepticum; 24% with IND-1 from Chryseobacterium indologenes; 21% with CphA-1 from Aeromonas hydrophila; and 11% with L-1 from Stenotrophomonas maltophilia. It was most closely related to VIM-1 beta-lactamase recently reported from Italian P. aeruginosa clinical isolates (90% amino acid identity). Purified VIM-2 beta-lactamase had a pI of 5.6, a relative molecular mass of 29.7 kDa, and a broad substrate hydrolysis range, including penicillins, cephalosporins, cephamycins, oxacephamycins, and carbapenems, but not monobactams. As a metallo-beta-lactamase, its activity was zinc dependent and inhibited by EDTA (50% inhibitory concentration, 50 microM). VIM-2 conferred a resistance pattern to beta-lactams in E. coli DH10B that paralleled its in vitro hydrolytic properties, except for susceptibility to ureidopenicillins, carbapenems, and cefepime. bla(VIM-2) was located on a ca. 45-kb plasmid that in addition conferred resistance to sulfamides and that was not self-transmissible either from P. aeruginosa to E. coli or from E. coli to E. coli. bla(VIM-2) was the only gene cassette located within the variable region of a novel class 1 integron, In56, that was weakly related to the bla(VIM-1)-containing integron. VIM-2 is the second carbapenem-hydrolyzing metalloenzyme characterized from a P. aeruginosa isolate outside Japan.

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