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Publications with NCTC antimicrobial resistant strains

Below are recent selected publications which feature NCTC strains used in antimicrobial resistance research.


1. A Systematic Study of the Antibacterial Activity of Basidiomycota Crude Extracts

Marco Clericuzio 1, Mattia Bivona 1, Elisa Gamalero 1, Elisa Bona 2, Giorgia Novello 1, Nadia Massa 1, Francesco Dovana 3, Emilio Marengo 1, Elisa Robotti 1

The excessive consumption of antibiotics in clinical, veterinary and agricultural fields has resulted in tremendous flow of antibiotics into the environment. This has led to enormous selective pressures driving the evolution of antimicrobial resistance genes in pathogenic and commensal bacteria. In this context, the World Health Organization (WHO) has promoted research aiming to develop medical features using natural products that are often competitive with synthetic drugs in clinical performance. Fungi are considered an important source of bioactive molecules, often effective against other fungi and/or bacteria, and thus are potential candidates in the search of new antibiotics. Fruiting bodies of sixteen different fungal species of Basidiomycota were collected in the Italian Alps. The identification of fungal species was performed through Internal Transcribed Spacer (ITS) sequencing. Most species belong to genera Cortinarius, Mycena and Ramaria, whose metabolite contents has been scarcely investigated so far. The crude extracts obtained from the above mushrooms were tested for their inhibition activity against five human pathogens: Candida albicans ATCC 14053, C. glabrata ATCC 15126, Staphylococcus aureus NCTC 6571, Pseudomonas aeruginosa ATCC 27853 and Klebsiella pneumoniae ATCC 13883. Twelve crude extracts showed activity against P. aeruginosa ATCC 27853. Highest activity


2. Campylobacter Biofilms: Potential of Natural Compounds to disrupt Campylobacter jejuni Transmission

Bassam A Elgamoudi 1, Victoria Korolik 1 2

Microbial biofilms occur naturally in many environmental niches and can be a significant reservoir of infectious microbes in zoonotically transmitted diseases such as that caused by Campylobacter jejuni, the leading cause of acute human bacterial gastroenteritis world-wide. The greatest challenge in reducing the disease caused by this organism is reducing transmission of C. jejuni to humans from poultry via the food chain. Biofilms enhance the stress tolerance and antimicrobial resistance of the microorganisms they harbor and are considered to play a crucial role for Campylobacter spp. survival and transmission to humans. Unconventional approaches to control biofilms and to improve the efficacy of currently used antibiotics are urgently needed. This review summarizes the use plant- and microorganism-derived antimicrobial and antibiofilm compounds such as essential oils, antimicrobial peptides (AMPs), polyphenolic extracts, algae extracts, probiotic-derived factors, d-amino acids (DAs) and glycolipid biosurfactants with potential to control biofilms formed by Campylobacter, and the suggested mechanisms of their action. Further investigation and use of such natural compounds could improve preventative and remedial strategies aimed to limit the transmission of campylobacters and other human pathogens via the food chain.


3. First Report of CC5-MRSA-IV-SCC fus "Maltese Clone" in Bat Guano

Assia Mairi 1 2, Abdelaziz Touati 1, Alix Pantel 3, Alex Yahiaoui Martinez 3, Mourad Ahmim 4, Albert Sotto 5, Catherine Dunyach-Remy 3, Jean-Philippe Lavigne 3

Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) is a widespread pathogen that could cause different illnesses in both human and animals. Presence of MRSA in animals raises concerns of their capacity to act as reservoirs, particularly in wild animals. This study aimed to characterize the resistance and virulence patterns of S. aureus strains isolated from bat guano in Algeria. From March to May 2016, 98 bat guano samples from Aokas's cave (Bejaia, Algeria) were collected. Swabs were taken for microbiological studies. Isolates were identified by Vitek® MS system, and antibiotic susceptibility was determined by disk diffusion method. The clonal origin, virulence and antibiotic resistance profiles of S. aureus isolates were characterized by whole genome sequencing. Eleven S. aureus strains were obtained from the 98 guano samples. Seven isolates were sensitive to all antibiotics tested and four (36.3%) were resistant to penicillin G, cefoxitin and fusidic acid. The four MRSA isolates were assigned to the sequence type ST149 and related to spa type t010. These isolates harbored a SCCmecIV element and the fusidic acid resistance element Q6GD50 (fusC). They carried different virulence genes including several enterotoxins (sea, egc enterotoxin locus, sec, sel), and the toxic shock syndrome toxin (tst). Our results highlight that bat guano may constitute an important reservoir of MRSA strains.


4. Chlorhexidine gluconate usage is associated with antiseptic tolerance in staphylococci from the neonatal intensive care unit


Dheeraj K Sethi 1 2, Heather Felgate 1, Maria Diaz 1, Kirstin Faust 3, Cemsid Kiy 3, Paul Clarke 2 4, Christoph Härtel 5, Jan Rupp 6, Mark A Webber 1 2

Background: Intravascular catheters are essential for care in Neonatal Intensive Care Units (NICUs) but predispose infants to catheter-associated infections including late-onset sepsis, commonly caused by CoNS. Antiseptics are applied to prevent infection with chlorhexidine (CHG) and octenidine (OCT) the most common agents used.

Objectives: To investigate the association between antiseptic use and bacterial susceptibility.

Methods: CoNS isolates were collected from two NICUs with differing antiseptic regimens: Norwich, UK (using CHG) and Lubeck, Germany (using OCT). CoNS were isolated from different body sites of babies upon admission, and weekly thereafter. Antiseptic susceptibility testing was performed, and a selection underwent genome sequencing.

Results: A total of 1274 isolates were collected. UK isolates (n = 863) were significantly less susceptible than German isolates (n = 411) to both CHG (mean MIC: 20.1 mg/L versus 8.9 mg/L) and OCT (mean MIC: 2.3 mg/L versus 1.6 mg/L). UK isolates taken on admission were more susceptible to CHG than subsequent isolates. No cross-resistance between the agents was seen. Genome sequencing of 122 CoNS showed the most common species to be Staphylococcus epidermidis and Staphylococcus haemolyticus and phylogenetic analysis suggested antiseptic tolerance evolved multiple times in independent lineages. There was no evidence of dominant antiseptic tolerant clones and carriage of genes previously implicated in antimicrobial susceptibility (qac, smr, norA/B), did not correlate with CHG or OCT susceptibility.

Conclusions: Long-term CHG use may select for CHG and OCT tolerance in CoNS. This highlights the different potential for separate antiseptic regimens to select for resistance development. This could be an important factor in developing future infection control policies.


5. Colistin resistance in Gram-negative bacteria analysed by five phenotypic assays and inference of the underlying genomic mechanisms.

Diana Albertos Torres 1 2, Helena M B Seth-Smith 1 2, Nicole Joosse 2 3, Claudia Lang 4, Olivier Dubuis 4, Magdalena Nüesch-Inderbinen 5, Vladimira Hinic 2, Adrian Egli 6 7

Background: Colistin is used against multi-drug resistant pathogens, yet resistance emerges through dissemination of plasmid-mediated genes (mcr) or chromosomal mutation of genes involved in lipopolysaccharide synthesis (i.e. mgrB, phoPQ, pmrCAB). Phenotypic susceptibility testing is challenging due to poor diffusion of colistin in agar media, leading to an underestimation of resistance. Performance of five phenotypic approaches was compared in the context of different molecular mechanisms of resistance. We evaluated Vitek 2® (bioMérieux, AST N242), Colistin MIC Test Strip (Liofilchem Diagnostici), UMIC (Biocentric), and Rapid Polymyxin™ NP test (ELITechGroup) against the standard broth microdilution (BMD) method. We used whole genome sequencing (WGS) to infer molecular resistance mechanisms. We analysed 97 Enterobacterales and non-fermenting bacterial isolates, largely clinical isolates collected up to 2018. Data was analysed by comparing susceptibility categories (susceptible or resistant) and minimal inhibitory concentrations (MIC). Susceptibility category concordance is the percentage of test results sharing the same category to BMD. MIC concordance was calculated similarly but considering ±1 MIC titre error range. We determined genomic diversity by core genome multi locus sequencing typing (cgMLST) and identified putative antimicrobial resistance genes using NCBI and CARD databases, and manual annotation.

Results: Of 97 isolates, 54 (56%) were resistant with standard BMD. Highest susceptibility category concordance was achieved by Rapid Polymyxin™ NP (98.8%) followed by UMIC (97.9%), Colistin E-test MIC strip (96.9%) and Vitek 2® (95.6%). Highest MIC concordance was achieved by UMIC (80.4%), followed by Vitek 2® (72.5%) and Colistin E-test MIC strip (62.9%). Among resistant isolates, 23/54 (43%) were intrinsically resistant to colistin, whereas 31/54 (57%) isolates had acquired colistin resistance. Of these, mcr-1 was detected in four isolates and mcr-2 in one isolate. Non-synonymous mutations in mgrB, phoQ, pmrA, pmrB, and pmrC genes were encountered in Klebsiella pneumoniae, Escherichia coli, and Acinetobacter bereziniae resistant isolates. Mutations found in mgrB and pmrB were only identified in isolates exhibiting MICs of ≥16 mg/L.

Conclusions: The Rapid Polymyxin™ NP test showed highest categorical concordance and the UMIC test provided MIC values with high concordance to BMD. We found colistin resistance in diverse species occurred predominantly through spontaneous chromosomal mutation rather than plasmid-mediated resistance.

December 2023