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Clin Microbiol Infect. 2004 Aug;10(8):684-704.

Antimicrobial resistance of Acinetobacter spp. in Europe.

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Department of Medical Microbiology, University Hospital Antwerp, UA, Antwerp, Belgium.


Bacteria of the genus Acinetobacter are ubiquitous in nature. These organisms were invariably susceptible to many antibiotics in the 1970s. Since that time, acinetobacters have emerged as multiresistant opportunistic nosocomial pathogens. The taxonomy of the genus Acinetobacter underwent extensive revision in the mid-1980s, and at least 32 named and unnamed species have now been described. Of these, Acinetobacter baumannii and the closely related unnamed genomic species 3 and 13 sensu Tjernberg and Ursing (13TU) are the most relevant clinically. Multiresistant strains of these species causing bacteraemia, pneumonia, meningitis, urinary tract infections and surgical wound infections have been isolated from hospitalised patients worldwide. This review provides an overview of the antimicrobial susceptibilities of Acinetobacter spp. in Europe, as well as the main mechanisms of antimicrobial resistance, and summarises the remaining treatment options for multiresistant Acinetobacter infections.

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