Identification of the conjugative mef gene in clinical Acinetobacter junii and Neisseria gonorrhoeae isolates.
ABSTRACT: The mef gene, originally described for gram-positive organisms and coding for an efflux pump, has been identified in clinical isolates of Acinetobacter junii and Neisseria gonorrhoeae. These strains could transfer the mef gene at frequencies ranging from 10(-6) to 10(-9) into one or more of the following recipients: gram-negative Moraxella catarrhalis, Neisseria perflava/sicca and Neisseria mucosa and gram-positive Enterococcus faecalis. Three Streptococcus pneumoniae strains could transfer the mef gene into Eikenella corrodens, Haemophilus influenzae, Kingella denitrificans, M. catarrhalis, Neisseria meningitidis, N. perflava/sicca, and N. mucosa at similar frequencies. The mef gene can thus be transferred to and expressed in a variety of gram-negative recipients.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Neisseria lactamica as one of the main commensal in oropharynx during the childhood is related to the induction of a natural immunity against meningococcal meningitis. Also Moraxella catarrhalis in oropharynx of children is a predisposing factor for otitis media infection. OBJECTIVES:The current study aimed to investigate the frequency of the N. lactamica, other nonpathogenic Neisseria spp. and M. catarrhalis in the oropharynx of young healthy children in Ahvaz, Iran by the two phenotypic tests and Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR). MATERIALS AND METHODS:A total of 192 oropharyngeal swab samples of the young healthy children were studied during four months. Swabs were plated onto enriched selective media and non-selective media. Gram-negative and oxidase-positive diplococci were identified by several conventional biochemical tests. The PCR and sequencing were used to confirm the accuracy of laboratory diagnosis to identify N. lactamica and M. catarrhalis. RESULTS:Among 192 young healthy children with the mean age of 5.93 ± 2.5903 years, authors identified: N. lactamica (21.9%) in the age group of one to nine years; N. mucosa (6.3%); N. sicca (7.8%); N. cinerea (1.6%); N. subflava (biovar subflava) (4.2%); N. subflava (biovar perflava) (28.1%); N. subflava (biovar flava) (7.3%) and M. catarrhalis (42.7%). CONCLUSIONS:The young healthy children screening by colonization of N. lactamica and other nonpathogenic Neisseria spp. in oropharynx was the first report in Ahvaz, Iran. The study results demonstrated the high frequency of colonization of M. catarrhalis in the studied young healthy children other than Neisseria spp.
Project description:Two Neisseria gonorrhoeae isolates from Seattle and two isolates from Uruguay were resistant to erythromycin (MIC, 4 to 16 microg/ml) and had reduced susceptibility to azithromycin (MIC, 1 to 4 microg/ml) due to the presence of the self-mobile rRNA methylase gene(s) ermF or ermB and ermF. The two Seattle isolates and one isolate from Uruguay were multiresistant, carrying either the 25.2-MDa tetM-containing plasmid (Seattle) or a beta-lactamase plasmid (Uruguay). Sixteen commensal Neisseria isolates (10 Neisseria perflava-N. sicca, 2 N. flava, and 4 N. mucosa) for which erythromycin MICs were 4 to 16 microg/ml were shown to carry one or more known rRNA methylase genes, including ermB, ermC, and/or ermF. Many of these isolates also were multiresistant and carried the tetM gene. This is the first time that a complete transposon or a complete conjugative transposon carrying an antibiotic resistance gene has been described for the genus Neisseria.
Project description:Neisseria gonorrhoeae strains with reduced susceptibility to cefixime (MICs, 0.25 to 0.5 micro g/ml) were isolated from male urethritis patients in Tokyo, Japan, in 2000 and 2001. The resistance to cephems including cefixime and penicillin was transferred to a susceptible recipient, N. gonorrhoeae ATCC 19424, by transformation of the penicillin-binding protein 2 gene (penA) that had been amplified by PCR from a strain with reduced susceptibility to cefixime (MIC, 0.5 micro g/ml). The sequences of penA in the strains with reduced susceptibilities to cefixime were different from those of other susceptible isolates and did not correspond to the reported N. gonorrhoeae penA gene sequences. Some regions in the transpeptidase-encoding domain in this penA gene were similar to those in the penA genes of Neisseria perflava (N. sicca), Neisseria cinerea, Neisseria flavescens, and Neisseria meningitidis. These results showed that a mosaic-like structure in the penA gene conferred reductions in the levels of susceptibility of N. gonorrhoeae to cephems and penicillin in a manner similar to that found for N. meningitidis and Streptococcus pneumoniae.
Project description:We screened 615 gram-positive isolates from 150 healthy children for the presence of the erm(A), erm(B), erm(C), erm(F), and mef(A) genes. The mef(A) genes were found in 20 (9%) of the macrolide-resistant isolates, including Enterococcus spp., Staphylococcus spp., and Streptococcus spp. Sixteen of the 19 gram-positive isolates tested carried the other seven open reading frames (ORFs) described in Tn1207.1, a genetic element carrying mef(A) recently described in Streptococcus pneumoniae. The three Staphylococcus spp. did not carry orf1 to orf3. A gram-negative Acinetobacter junii isolate also carried the other seven ORFs described in Tn1207.1. A Staphylococcus aureus isolate, a Streptococcus intermedius isolate, a Streptococcus sp. isolate, and an Enterococcus sp. isolate had their mef(A) genes completely sequenced and showed 100% identity at the DNA and amino acid levels with the mef(A) gene from S. pneumoniae.
Project description:Acinetobacter spp. are considered to be emerging nosocomial pathogens. Acinetobacter junii is a rare cause of disease in humans and was associated mainly with bacteremia in preterm infants and pediatric oncologic patients. In this report we describe a case of catheter-related infection by A. junii in an adult oncologic patient. Application of molecular methods for precise species identification of Acinetobacter spp. will help to further clarify their role as human pathogens.
Project description:Neisseria gonorrhoeae (gonococci) and Neisseria meningitidis (meningococci) are human pathogens that cause gonorrhea and meningococcal meningitis, respectively. Both N. gonorrhoeae and N. meningitidis release a number of small peptidoglycan (PG) fragments, including proinflammatory PG monomers, although N. meningitidis releases fewer PG monomers. The PG fragments released by N. gonorrhoeae and N. meningitidis are generated in the periplasm during cell wall remodeling, and a majority of these fragments are transported into the cytoplasm by an inner membrane permease, AmpG; however, a portion of the PG fragments are released into the extracellular environment through unknown mechanisms. We previously reported that the expression of meningococcal ampG in N. gonorrhoeae reduced PG monomer release by gonococci. This finding suggested that the efficiency of AmpG-mediated PG fragment recycling regulates the amount of PG fragments released into the extracellular milieu. We determined that three AmpG residues near the C-terminal end of the protein modulate AmpG's efficiency. We also investigated the association between PG fragment recycling and release in two species of human-associated nonpathogenic Neisseria: N. sicca and N. mucosa Both N. sicca and N. mucosa release lower levels of PG fragments and are more efficient at recycling PG fragments than N. gonorrhoeae Our results suggest that N. gonorrhoeae has evolved to increase the amounts of toxic PG fragments released by reducing its PG recycling efficiency.Neisseria gonorrhoeae and Neisseria meningitidis are human pathogens that cause highly inflammatory diseases, although N. meningitidis is also frequently found as a normal member of the nasopharyngeal microbiota. Nonpathogenic Neisseria, such as N. sicca and N. mucosa, also colonize the nasopharynx without causing disease. Although all four species release peptidoglycan fragments, N. gonorrhoeae is the least efficient at recycling and releases the largest amount of proinflammatory peptidoglycan monomers, partly due to differences in the recycling permease AmpG. Studying the interplay between bacterial physiology (peptidoglycan metabolism) and pathogenesis (release of toxic monomers) leads to an increased understanding of how different bacterial species maintain asymptomatic colonization or cause disease and may contribute to efforts to mitigate disease.
Project description:This study explores the potential of lead resistant bacterium Acinetobacter junii Pb1 for adsorption/accumulation of lead using various techniques. In the present work, growth of A. junii Pb1 was investigated in the presence of a range of Pb(II) concentrations (0, 100, 250, 500, and 1000 mg l-1). Lead was found to have no toxic effect on the growth of A. junii Pb1 at 100 and 250 mg l-1 concentrations. However, further increase in Pb(II) concentration (500 mg l-1) showed increase in lag phase, though growth remained unaffected and significant growth inhibition was observed when concentration was increased to 1000 mg l-1. Same was confirmed by the observations of flow cytometry. Further, the effect of Pb(II) on A. junii Pb1 was evaluated by using fluorescence microscopy, spectrofluorimetry, and flow cytometry. The spectrofluorimetry and fluorescence microscopy results revealed the accumulation of Pb(II) inside the bacterial cells as evident by green fluorescence due to lead binding fluorescent probe, Leadmium Green AM dye. Flow cytometry observations indicate an increase in cell size and granularity of exposure to lead. Thus, present work provides a new understanding of Pb(II) tolerance in A. junii Pb1 and its potential use in remediation of lead from contaminated soil.
Project description:BACKGROUND:We investigated the diversity of the primary sequences of the 16S rRNA genes among 46 commensal Neisseria strains and evaluated the use of this approach as a molecular typing tool in comparison with PFGE analysis. METHODS:Identification to the genus was done using conventional methods and API NH (bio-Mérieux® ). Identification to species level was based on 16S rRNA gene sequencing. PFGE analysis was done using SpeI. RESULTS:Fourteen, two, three and fourteen 16S rRNA sequence types were found among twenty Neisseria flavescens, two Neisseria sicca, five Neisseria macacae and nineteen Neisseria mucosa clinical isolates. Forty-three different PFGE patterns were found among the tested strains. CONCLUSION:We demonstrated a high diversity among 16S rRNA genes which was reflected by PFGE analysis.
Project description:Commensal non-pathogenic Neisseria spp. live within the human host alongside the pathogenic Neisseria meningitidis and Neisseria gonorrhoeae and due to natural competence, horizontal gene transfer within the genus is possible and has been observed. Four distinct Neisseria spp. isolates taken from the throats of two human volunteers have been assessed here using a combination of microbiological and bioinformatics techniques. Three of the isolates have been identified as Neisseria subflava biovar perflava and one as Neisseria cinerea. Specific gene clusters have been identified within these commensal isolate genome sequences that are believed to encode a Type VI Secretion System, a newly identified CRISPR system, a Type IV Secretion System unlike that in other Neisseria spp., a hemin transporter, and a haem acquisition and utilization system. This investigation is the first to investigate these systems in either the non-pathogenic or pathogenic Neisseria spp. In addition, the N. subflava biovar perflava possess previously unreported capsule loci and sequences have been identified in all four isolates that are similar to genes seen within the pathogens that are associated with virulence. These data from the four commensal isolates provide further evidence for a Neisseria spp. gene pool and highlight the presence of systems within the commensals with functions still to be explored.
Project description:The genus Acinetobacter consists of 31 validly published species ubiquitously distributed in nature and primarily associated with nosocomial infection. We report the 3.5 Mb draft genome of the Acinetobacter junii strain MTCC 11364. The genome has a G + C content of 38.0% and includes 3 rRNA genes (5S, 23S, 16S) and 64 aminoacyl-tRNA synthetase genes.