Study of the carbapenem resistance mechanisms in clinical isolates of Acinetobacter baumannii: comparison of burn and non-burn strains.
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We examined the prevalence of various carbapenem resistance mechanisms in clinical isolates of Acinetobacter baumannii collected from hospitalized burn and non-burn patients. Antimicrobial susceptibility testing was performed for 43 burn and 32 non-burn isolates. Carbapenem resistance genes were identified and repetitive extragenic palindromic PCR (REP-PCR) was used to define clonal relatedness. CarO disruption was investigated by PCR and its expression analyzed by real time reverse transcription-PCR. Of the sixty-four (85%) carbapenem resistant A. baumannii isolates, 42 (66%) and 22 (34%) strains were recovered from burn and non-burn patients, respectively. Isolates were categorized into 6 major REP-PCR patterns; with the highest prevalence of non-burn and burn isolates in pattern A (63%) and B (35%), respectively. Prevalence of blaOXA-23 was 68% and isolates harbored this element belonged to all REP clusters. The blaOXA-40-like was detected in 49% of isolates, with higher prevalence among burn isolates. Three of the four isolates lacked carO gene were cultured from burn patients and level of the carO expression was decreased in carbapenem resistant isolates. These findings show that blaOXA-23 is widely distributed in carbapenem resistant A. baumannii isolates and other resistance mechanisms such as blaOXA-40-like and loss or decreased carO expression could be added in burn strains.