1887

Abstract

is an important opportunistic pathogen known for its high levels of resistance to many antibiotics, particularly those considered last resorts such as colistin and carbapenems. Plasmids of this organism are increasingly associated with the spread of clinically important antibiotic resistance genes. Although is a ubiquitous organism, to date, most of the focus has been on studying strains recovered from clinical samples ignoring those isolated in the environment (soil, water, food, etc.). Here, we analysed the genetic structures of eight novel plasmids carried by an environmental colistin-resistant (strain E-072658) recovered in a recycled fibre pulp in a paper mill in Finland. It was shown that E-072658 carries a new variant of the colistin resistance gene () in a novel Tnfamily transposon (called Tn) carried by a novel plasmid p8E072658. E-072658 is also resistant to sulphonamide compounds; consistent with this, the sulphonamide resistance gene was found in a p module. E-072658 also carries six additional plasmids with no antibiotic resistance genes, but they contained several p modules shared with plasmids carried by clinical strains. Detailed analysis of the genetic structure of all eight plasmids carried by E-072658 showed a complex evolutionary history revealing genetic exchange events within the genus beyond the clinical or environmental origin of the strains. This work provides evidence that environmental strains might act as a source for some of the clinically significant antibiotic resistance genes.

Funding
This study was supported by the:
  • Australian Research Council (Award DE200100111)
    • Principle Award Recipient: MehradHamidian
  • Australian Research Council (Award FT220100152)
    • Principle Award Recipient: AmyK Cain
  • Australian Research Council (Award FL140100021)
    • Principle Award Recipient: IanT. Paulsen
  • This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License.
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2023-05-12
2024-07-23
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