Widespread dissemination of aminoglycoside resistance genes armA and rmtB in Klebsiella pneumoniae isolates in Taiwan producing CTX-M-type extended-spectrum beta-lactamases

Ling Ma, Chi-Jan Lin, Jiun-Han Chen, Chang-Phone Fung, Feng-Yee Chang, Yiu-Kay Lai, Jung-Chung Lin, L K Siu et al.
Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy 2009, 53 (1): 104-11
Among 235 extended-spectrum beta-lactamase-producing Klebsiella pneumoniae (ESBL) isolates collected from a nationwide surveillance performed in Taiwan, 102 (43.4%) were resistant to amikacin. Ninety-two of these 102 (90.2%) isolates were carrying CTX-M-type beta-lactamases individually or concomitantly with SHV-type or CMY-2 beta-lactamases. The armA and rmtB alleles were individually detected in 44 and 37 of these 92 isolates, respectively. One isolate contained both armA and rmtB. The coexistence of the aac(6')-Il and rmtB genes was detected in three isolates. CTX-M-type beta-lactamase genes belonging to either group 1 (CTX-M-3 and CTX-M-15) or group 9 (CTX-M-14) were found in all armA- or rmtB-bearing ESBL-producing K. pneumoniae isolates, and all were conjugatively transferable. All except one of the isolates bearing armA produced CTX-M enzymes of group 1, and the remaining isolate bearing armA produced a group 9 CTX-M-type beta-lactamase. On the contrary, in the majority of rmtB carriers, the CTX-M-type beta-lactamase belonged to group 9 (62.2%). Molecular typing revealed that the amikacin-resistant ESBL-producing K. pneumoniae isolates were epidemiologically unrelated, indicating that the acquisition of resistance was not through the spread of a resistant clone or a resistance plasmid. A tandem repeat or multiple copies of bla(CTX-M-3) were found in some armA-bearing isolates. An ISEcp1 insert was found in all CTX-M ESBL-producing K. pneumoniae isolates carrying armA or rmtB. In conclusion, the concomitant presence of a 16S rRNA methylase gene (armA or rmtB) and bla(CTX-M) among amikacin-resistant ESBL-producing K. pneumoniae isolates is widespread in Taiwan.

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