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Genetic relatedness and host specificity of Pseudomonas aeruginosa isolates from cystic fibrosis and non-cystic fibrosis patients

Authors AbdulWahab A, Taj-Aldeen SJ, Ibrahim EB, Abdulla S, Muhammed R, Ahmed I, Abdeen Y, Sadek O, Abu-Madi M

Received 1 August 2014

Accepted for publication 2 September 2014

Published 20 November 2014 Volume 2014:7 Pages 309—316


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Professor Suresh Antony

Atqah AbdulWahab,1 Saad J Taj-Aldeen,2 Emad Ibrahim,2 Shaikha H Abdulla,3 Ramees Muhammed,3 Irshad Ahmed,3 Yasmine Abdeen,4 Omnia Sadek,4 Marawan Abu-Madi4

1Department of Pediatrics, Hamad Medical Corporation, 2Microbiology Division, Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathology, Hamad Medical Corporation, 3Molecular Biology Unit, Central Food Laboratories, Supreme Council of Health, 4Department of Health Sciences, College of Arts and Sciences, Qatar University, Doha, Qatar

Background: Pseudomonas aeruginosa is one of the primary pathogens isolated more frequently in cystic fibrosis (CF) and it exhibits innate resistance to a wide range of antibiotics.
Purpose: We sought to determine whether the highly prevalent genotypes of P. aeruginosa are specifically linked to CF patients and have any related multidrug antibiotic resistance. Isolates from hospitalized non-CF patients and from environmental sources were also genotypically analyzed.
Methods: Collections of P. aeruginosa from lower respiratory secretions (n=45) were genotyped using pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE). Phenotypic screening for antibiotic susceptibility was performed for the common antimicrobial agents by E-test and automated Phoenix method.
Results: P. aeruginosa isolates from CF (n=32), hospitalized non-CF patients (n=13), and environment sources (n=5) were analyzed. The population structure of P. aeruginosa is highly diverse and population-specific. All PFGE results of P. aeruginosa isolates fall among four major clusters. Cluster 1 contained 16 P. aeruginosa isolates from CF patients and two from environmental sources; cluster 2 contained 11 P. aeruginosa isolates from CF and one each from non-CF and environmental sources; cluster 3 contained 12 P. aeruginosa isolates from hospitalized non-CF patients and two P. aeruginosa isolates from one CF patient and one environmental source; and cluster 4 consisted of three isolates from CF patients and one from the environment. The majority of multidrug-resistant P. aeruginosa isolates were in clusters 3 and 4. P. aeruginosa isolates from CF patients were resistant to ciprofloxacin (34.4%) followed by resistance to amikacin and gentamicin (each 28%), whereas the majority of isolates from non-CF patients were resistant to meropenem (69%) and were grouped in cluster 3.
Conclusion: PFGE of P. aeruginosa isolates from CF patients shows a high degree of similarity, suggesting specific adaptation of these clones to CF-affected lungs. The hospitalized non-CF cluster has a different clonal origin, indicating specific clustering in a specific location, suggesting hospital-acquired P. aeruginosa infections.

Keywords: cystic fibrosis, drug susceptibility testing, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, pulsed-field gel electrophoresis

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