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Clin Microbiol Rev. 2008 Jul;21(3):538-82. doi: 10.1128/CMR.00058-07.

Acinetobacter baumannii: emergence of a successful pathogen.

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Division of Infectious Diseases, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and Harvard Medical School, 110 Francis Street, LMOB Suite GB, Boston, MA 02215, USA.


Acinetobacter baumannii has emerged as a highly troublesome pathogen for many institutions globally. As a consequence of its immense ability to acquire or upregulate antibiotic drug resistance determinants, it has justifiably been propelled to the forefront of scientific attention. Apart from its predilection for the seriously ill within intensive care units, A. baumannii has more recently caused a range of infectious syndromes in military personnel injured in the Iraq and Afghanistan conflicts. This review details the significant advances that have been made in our understanding of this remarkable organism over the last 10 years, including current taxonomy and species identification, issues with susceptibility testing, mechanisms of antibiotic resistance, global epidemiology, clinical impact of infection, host-pathogen interactions, and infection control and therapeutic considerations.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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