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Kekkaku. 1998 Nov;73(11):657-63.

[Multidrug-resistant tuberculosis. 2. Mechanisms of drug-resistance in Mycobacterium tuberculosis--genetic mechanisms of drug-resistance].

[Article in Japanese]

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  • 1Second Department of Internal Medicine, Nagasaki University School of Medicine, Japan.


Multidrug-resistant Mycobacterium tuberculosis infection is now world wide health problem. However, according to the recent advances of molecular biological technics, some of the genetic mechanisms of drug-resistance of M. tuberculosis has been uncovered. Generally, drug-resistance of M. tuberculosis was caused by point mutations in chromosomal gene. In isoniazid (INH) resistant M. tuberculosis, mutations and genetic deletions in catalase-peroxidase gene (katG), inhA gene, or alkyl hydroperoxide reductase gene were reported. We also found that about 15% of INH-resistant M. tuberculosis isolates lacked katG gene, and these isolates showed highly resistance to INH with MIC > or = 64 micrograms/ml. On the other hand, mutations and other genetic alterations in RNA polymerase beta subunit gene (rpoB) were the major mechanisms of resistance to rifampicin (RFP) with high frequencies of 90% or more. Our evaluation of the relationship between RFP susceptibility and genetic alteration in rpoB gene also showed that 95% of RFP-resistant M. tuberculosis isolates involved genetic alterations in 69 bp core region of rpoB gene. Moreover, these genetic alterations in rpoB gene were suspected as the resistant mechanism to other rifamycin antituberculosis drugs, such as rifabutin and KRM-1648. In addition, it was reported that point mutations in 16S rRNA gene (rrs) and ribosomal protein S12 gene (rpsL) induced M. tuberculosis as streptomycin (SM) resistant phenotype. We analyzed genetic alternations in rpsL gene of clinically isolates of M. tuberculosis, about 60% of SM resistant isolates were shown point mutation in this gene ant they were all high SM-resistant with MIC > or = 256 micrograms/ml. Furthermore, nicotinamidase (pncA) gene, DNA gyrase A subunit (gyrA) gene, and embB gene were reported as the responsible gene to pyrazinamide-, quinolone- and ethambutol-resistance, respectively. Although all mechanisms of drug-resistance were still unclear, these informations are very useful and helpful for development of rapid diagnosis system of drug-resistant M. tuberculosis.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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