Send to

Choose Destination
J Antimicrob Chemother. 2018 Oct 8. doi: 10.1093/jac/dky391. [Epub ahead of print]

WGS analysis of a penicillin-resistant Neisseria meningitidis strain containing a chromosomal ROB-1 β-lactamase gene.

Author information

Vaccine Preventable Bacterial Diseases, National Microbiology Laboratory, Public Health Agency of Canada, Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada.
Public Health Ontario, and Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathobiology, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
Provincial Laboratory for Public Health and Division of Diagnostic and Applied Microbiology, Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathology, University of Alberta, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada.



Neisseria meningitidis is rarely penicillin resistant. We describe WGS analysis of a penicillin-resistant N. meningitidis collected from a case of invasive meningococcal disease.


Serogrouping, serotyping and serosubtyping were performed with specific antibodies. β-Lactamase was detected by nitrocefin. MICs were determined by Etest and agar dilution. Sequencing of N. meningitidis genomes was done on the Illumina MiSeq platform and genome data were analysed using the Bacterial Isolate Genome Sequence Database (BIGSdb) on the PubMLST Neisseria website ( Transformation was used to confirm the genetic basis of the penicillin resistance.


An N. meningitidis blood isolate from a female patient in her mid-50s with a painful and septic left shoulder was found to have penicillin MIC values of 3-12 mg/L. The isolate was typed as Y: 14, 19: P1.- and ST3587, and was weakly β-lactamase positive. WGS analysis identified a full-length copy of the β-lactamase gene blaROB-1, which was contained on a 1719 bp insert with a G + C content of 41.7% (versus a G + C content of N. meningitidis of 51.7%), suggesting that the blaROB-1 gene came from a different bacterial species. A GenBank analysis of the blaROB-1 gene insert found 99.77% identity with a DNA segment found in plasmid pB1000' from Haemophilus influenzae. Transformation of a penicillin-susceptible strain with the blaROB-1 gene conferred β-lactamase activity and penicillin resistance.


N. meningitidis serogroup Y, ST3587 can carry and express the blaROB-1 gene, leading to penicillin resistance. It is highly likely that the N. meningitidis isolate acquired the blaROB-1 gene from H. influenzae.


Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Silverchair Information Systems
Loading ...
Support Center