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FEMS Microbiol Lett. 2007 Jan;266(1):42-8.

Molecular characterization of ICEVchVie0 and its disappearance in Vibrio cholerae O1 strains isolated in 2003 in Vietnam.

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Department of Cellular and Developmental Biology, University of Rome La Sapienza, Rome, Italy.


We analyzed 28 epidemic Vibrio cholerae O1 strains isolated in the region of Thua Thien Hue (Vietnam) in 2003. Ubiquitous amoxicillin, prevalent aminoglycosides and sporadic erythromycin resistances were observed. All were devoid of plasmids, class 1 integrons and ICEs and showed the same BglI ribotype, irrespective of their site of isolation and resistance pattern. A strain isolated in 1990 in the same area was resistant to amoxicillin and aminoglycosides but characterized by a different ribotype. This strain contained ICEVchVie0, belonging to the SXT/R391 ICE family, devoid of any resistance cluster. The molecular analysis of three conserved and six variable regions outlined an original genetic profile. ICEs not coding for resistance to drugs seem to be more frequent than supposed, and this finding reinforces the idea that the SXT/R391 family of genetic elements is wide and composite. The clearance of ICEVchVie0 in the 2003 epidemic may be explained by the lack of any resistance determinant as a favorable selective marker.

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