Mutational events in cefotaximase extended-spectrum beta-lactamases of the CTX-M-1 cluster involved in ceftazidime resistance

Angela Novais, Rafael Cantón, Teresa M Coque, Andrés Moya, Fernando Baquero, Juan Carlos Galán
Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy 2008, 52 (7): 2377-82
CTX-M beta-lactamases, which show a high cefotaxime hydrolytic activity, constitute the most prevalent extended-spectrum beta-lactamase (ESBL) type found among clinical isolates. The recent explosive diversification of CTX-M enzymes seems to have taken place due to the appearance of more efficient enzymes which are capable of hydrolyzing both cefotaxime and ceftazidime, especially among the CTX-M-1 cluster. A combined strategy of in vitro stepwise evolution experiments using bla(CTX-M-1), bla(CTX-M-3), and bla(CTX-M-10) genes and site-directed mutagenesis has been used to evaluate the role of ceftazidime and other beta-lactam antibiotics in triggering the diversity found among enzymes belonging to this cluster. Two types of mutants, P167S and D240G, displaying high ceftazidime MICs but reduced resistance to cefotaxime and/or cefepime, respectively, were identified. Such an antagonistic pleiotropic effect was particularly evident with P167S/T mutations. The incompatibility between P167S and D240G changes was demonstrated, since double mutants reduced susceptibility to both ceftazidime and cefotaxime-cefepime; this may explain the absence of strains containing both mutations in the clinical environment. The role of A77V and N106S mutations, which are frequently associated with P167S/T and/or D240G, respectively, in natural strains, was investigated. The presence of A77V and N106S contributes to restore a high-level cefotaxime resistance phenotype, but only when associated with mutations P167S and D240G, respectively. However, A77V mutation increases resistance to both cefotaxime and ceftazidime when associated with CTX-M-10. This suggests that in this context this mutation might be considered a primary site involved in resistance to broad-spectrum cephalosporins.

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