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Eur J Clin Microbiol Infect Dis. 2009 Oct;28(10):1217-22. doi: 10.1007/s10096-009-0767-8. Epub 2009 Jun 7.

Emergence of extensive-drug-resistant Pseudomonas aeruginosa in a French university hospital.

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Service de Bactériologie, Centre Hospitalier Universitaire Besançon, Besançon, France.


The aim of this study was to describe the molecular epidemiology and the mechanisms of resistance to beta-lactams of emerging extensive-drug-resistant Pseudomonas aeruginosa (XDRPA) in a tertiary-care university hospital over a three-year period. Analysis included antimicrobial susceptibility profiling and pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE). Resistance mechanisms to beta-lactams were identified: production of naturally occurring and acquired beta-lactamases, overproduction of MexAB-OprM and MexXY efflux systems and loss of porin OprD were assessed. Eighteen patients were colonised or infected with XDRPA which remained susceptible to colistin and, to a lesser extent, to rifampicin. beta-lactam resistance was, in most cases, due to the overproduction of AmpC, overproduction of the MexXY efflux system and loss of porin OprD. One isolate produced the class D extended-spectrum oxacillinase (OXA-ESBL) Oxa-28, but none produced metallo-beta-lactamase (MBL) or class A extended-spectrum beta-lactamase (ESBL). The XDRPA clustered in eight PFGE patterns and both the acquisition and loss of resistance determinants was observed within a single clone during its spread. The emergence of XDRPA isolates in our university hospital has been characterised by genotypic heterogeneity, variation of mechanisms of resistance to beta-lactams in a single clone and the predominance of chromosomally encoded resistance mechanisms.

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