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Clonal Spread of Tetracycline Resistance Among Mycoplasma hominis Clinical Strains, Tunisia

Authors Boujemaa S, Mlik B, Mardassi H, Ben Abdelmoumen Mardassi B

Received 13 February 2020

Accepted for publication 28 April 2020

Published 2 July 2020 Volume 2020:13 Pages 2093—2097

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/IDR.S249630

Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Dr Sahil Khanna


Safa Boujemaa,1 Béhija Mlik,1 Helmi Mardassi,2 Boutheina Ben Abdelmoumen Mardassi1

1Group of Mycoplasmas, Laboratory of Molecular Microbiology, Vaccinology, and Biotechnology Development. Institut Pasteur De Tunis, Université De Tunis El Manar, Tunis, Tunisia; 2Unit of Typing & Genetics of Mycobacteria, Laboratory of Molecular Microbiology, Vaccinology, and Biotechnology Development. Institut Pasteur De Tunis, Université De Tunis El Manar, Tunis, Tunisia

Correspondence: Boutheina Ben Abdelmoumen Mardassi
Group of Mycoplasmas, Laboratory of Molecular Microbiology, Vaccinology, and Biotechnology Development. Institut Pasteur De Tunis, Université De Tunis El Manar, Tunis, Tunisia
Tel +216 71 847 609
Fax +216 71 791 833
Email boutheina.mardassi@pasteur.tn

Abstract: Antimicrobial resistance in a number of bacterial pathogens has been shown to spread clonally. To our knowledge, data about the phylodistribution of drug resistance in Mycoplasma hominis are very scarce. The aims of this study were to assess the antimicrobial susceptibility of Mycoplasma hominis clinical strains in Tunisia, to identify the molecular basis of antibiotic resistance, and to investigate the phylogenetic relationships of resistant strains. This study included 65 molecularly typed Mycoplasma hominis clinical strains recovered from Tunisian patients over 18 years (2000– 2018). The antimicrobial susceptibility was tested against nine antibacterial agents using the broth microdilution method. Minimum spanning tree was constructed to establish the phylogenetic relationships among resistant isolates. Fluoroquinolones, doxycycline, and josamycine were found to be the most effective antibacterial agents. However, 22 strains belonging to 11 expanded multilocus sequence types (eSTs) proved resistant to tetracycline. The majority of these eSTs were genetically related, indicative of clonal expansion of tetracycline resistance. The present study provides relevant information on the antibiotic susceptibility of Tunisian M. hominis clinical strains, lending support to a clonal transmission of tetracycline resistance. This is likely to have an important implication in monitoring the spread of drug resistance among M. hominis.

Keywords: Mycoplasma hominis, antibiotic resistance, tetracycline, clonal transmission, expanded multilocus sequence type

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