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Clin Infect Dis. 2002 Mar 1;34(5):603-11. Epub 2002 Jan 23.

Nosocomial spread of the integron-located veb-1-like cassette encoding an extended-pectrum beta-lactamase in Pseudomonas aeruginosa in Thailand.

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Department of Bacteriology-Virology, Hôpital de Bicêtre, Assistance Publique-Hôpitaux de Paris, Faculté de Médecine Paris-Sud, Le Kremlin-Bicêtre, France.


The beta-lactamase gene content and epidemiology of ceftazidime-resistant Pseudomonas aeruginosa isolates (24% of the total number of P. aeruginosa isolates) were investigated at a University Hospital in Thailand during a 4-month period in 1999. Of 33 nonrepetitive clinical isolates, 31 produced a VEB-1-like clavulanic acid-inhibited extended-spectrum beta-lactamase (ESBL). These isolates belonged to different pulsed-field gel electrophoresis types and subtypes. In 1 case, the bla(VEB-1)-like gene was plasmid located. The bla(VEB-1)-like genes were present as a gene cassette on class 1 integrons that varied in size and structure. In most cases, the veb-1 cassette was associated with an arr-2 cassette (rifampin resistance), aminoglycoside resistance gene cassettes, and an oxa-10-like cassette encoding a narrow-spectrum oxacillinase-type beta-lactamase. The present study indicates that ESBLs may be endemic in P. aeruginosa and illustrates that integrons are efficient means for their spread.

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