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Preview: Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy - current issue

Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy Current Issue





Published: Mon, 24 Jul 2017 00:00:00 GMT

Last Build Date: Tue, 22 Aug 2017 03:48:24 GMT

 






Social and professional influences on antimicrobial prescribing for doctors-in-training: a realist review

2017-07-09

Abstract
Background
Antimicrobial resistance has led to widespread implementation of interventions for appropriate prescribing. However, such interventions are often adopted without an adequate understanding of the challenges facing doctors-in-training as key prescribers.
Methods
The review followed a realist, theory-driven approach to synthesizing qualitative, quantitative and mixed-methods literature. Consistent with realist review quality standards, articles retrieved from electronic databases were systematically screened and analysed to elicit explanations of antimicrobial prescribing behaviours. These explanations were consolidated into a programme theory drawing on social science and learning theory, and shaped though input from patients and practitioners.
Results
By synthesizing data from 131 articles, the review highlights the complex social and professional dynamics underlying antimicrobial prescribing decisions of doctors-in-training. The analysis shows how doctors-in-training often operate within challenging contexts (hierarchical relationships, powerful prescribing norms, unclear roles and responsibilities, implicit expectations about knowledge levels, uncertainty about application of knowledge in practice) where they prioritize particular responses (fear of criticism and individual responsibility, managing one’s reputation and position in the team, appearing competent). These complex dynamics explain how and why doctors-in-training decide to: (i) follow senior clinicians’ prescribing habits; (ii) take (or not) into account prescribing aids, advice from other health professionals or patient expectations; and (iii) ask questions or challenge decisions. This increased understanding allows for targeted tailoring, design and implementation of antimicrobial prescribing interventions.
Conclusions
This review contributes to a better understanding of how antimicrobial prescribing interventions for doctors-in-training can be embedded more successfully in the hierarchical and inter-professional dynamics of different healthcare settings.



HIV-1 non-group M phenotypic susceptibility to integrase strand transfer inhibitors

2017-07-06

Abstract
Objectives
To determine natural phenotypic susceptibility of non-group M HIV-1 to integrase strand transfer inhibitors (INSTIs) in a large panel of 39 clinical strains from groups O, N and P and to identify genotypic polymorphisms according to susceptibility levels.
Methods
Susceptibility to raltegravir, elvitegravir and dolutegravir was evaluated in 36 HIV-1/O, 2 HIV-1/N and 1 HIV-1/P strains plus an HIV-1/M reference strain. IC50 values were determined after 3 days, and fold changes (FCs) were calculated relative to the HIV-1/M strain. Genotypic polymorphism was determined by amplification of codons 19–263 of the integrase; the natural occurrence of resistance-associated mutations was analysed using the main resistance algorithms and the IAS-USA list. VESPA analysis of the strain sequences was used to determine a signature pattern associated with higher FC.
Results
Similar IC50 results were observed for the three drugs. Based on the value for the HIV-1/M reference strain, the data showed FC values <2.5 for raltegravir and dolutegravir, whereas the distribution for elvitegravir was heterogeneous, with FC > 10 for six strains (15%). Analysis of the non-M integrase sequences showed a high level of polymorphism without a major genotypic impact; it also revealed mutations that may be associated with the highest FC values obtained for elvitegravir.
Conclusions
Our phenotypic data showed that non-M strains are globally susceptible to the three currently used INSTIs, but the impact of the high FC values observed for some strains with elvitegravir needs to be explored. Clinical data are now needed to confirm these phenotypic results.



OXA-427, a new plasmid-borne carbapenem-hydrolysing class D β-lactamase in Enterobacteriaceae

2017-07-06

Abstract
Objectives
To describe a novel plasmid-borne class D carbapenemase (CHDL) named OXA-427 identified in several Enterobacteriaceae clinical isolates from nine patients in one Belgian hospital.
Methods
OXA-427-producing isolates were analysed by an electrochemical imipenem hydrolysis method (BYG Carba test), Carba NP test, conventional phenotypic assays and by molecular methods (PCR, whole sequencing of the OXA-427-encoding plasmid and cloning). The antimicrobial resistance profile of OXA-427 was analysed by expression of the cloned gene in Escherichia coli DH10B and J53.
Results
Eleven OXA-427-producing Enterobacteriaceae isolates of various species were identified from clinical specimens of nine patients between March 2012 and June 2014. OXA-427 shares only 22%–29% amino acid identity with OXA-48-like enzymes and other acquired CHDL (e.g. OXA-23, -24/40 and -58 of Acinetobacter spp.). Conversely, it appeared closely related to the chromosomal class D β-lactamase of Aeromonas media, Aeromonas hydrophila and Aeromonas sobria (99%, 89% and 77% of identity, respectively). When expressed in E. coli, OXA-427 hydrolysed imipenem and conferred resistance to extended-spectrum cephalosporins (mostly ceftazidime), penicillins including temocillin, and reduced susceptibility to carbapenems. The blaOXA-427 gene was located in a 45 kb resistance island on a 177 kb IncA/C plasmid.
Conclusions
OXA-427 is a novel CHDL most closely related to chromosomal class D β-lactamase of A. media WS. It confers resistance to penicillins, ceftazidime and aztreonam and in some instances to carbapenems. OXA-427, which is not detectable by classical molecular tests, caused a protracted outbreak in one university hospital over a 2 year period.



MASTER: a model to improve and standardize clinical breakpoints for antimicrobial susceptibility testing using forecast probabilities

2017-07-06

Abstract
Objectives
The procedure for setting clinical breakpoints (CBPs) for antimicrobial susceptibility has been poorly standardized with respect to population data, pharmacokinetic parameters and clinical outcome. Tools to standardize CBP setting could result in improved antibiogram forecast probabilities. We propose a model to estimate probabilities for methodological categorization errors and defined zones of methodological uncertainty (ZMUs), i.e. ranges of zone diameters that cannot reliably be classified. The impact of ZMUs on methodological error rates was used for CBP optimization.
Methods
The model distinguishes theoretical true inhibition zone diameters from observed diameters, which suffer from methodological variation. True diameter distributions are described with a normal mixture model. The model was fitted to observed inhibition zone diameters of clinical Escherichia coli strains. Repeated measurements for a quality control strain were used to quantify methodological variation.
Results
For 9 of 13 antibiotics analysed, our model predicted error rates of < 0.1% applying current EUCAST CBPs. Error rates were > 0.1% for ampicillin, cefoxitin, cefuroxime and amoxicillin/clavulanic acid. Increasing the susceptible CBP (cefoxitin) and introducing ZMUs (ampicillin, cefuroxime, amoxicillin/clavulanic acid) decreased error rates to < 0.1%. ZMUs contained low numbers of isolates for ampicillin and cefuroxime (3% and 6%), whereas the ZMU for amoxicillin/clavulanic acid contained 41% of all isolates and was considered not practical.
Conclusions
We demonstrate that CBPs can be improved and standardized by minimizing methodological categorization error rates. ZMUs may be introduced if an intermediate zone is not appropriate for pharmacokinetic/pharmacodynamic or drug dosing reasons. Optimized CBPs will provide a standardized antibiotic susceptibility testing interpretation at a defined level of probability.



Evaluation of combinations of putative anti-biofilm agents and antibiotics to eradicate biofilms of Staphylococcus aureus and Pseudomonas aeruginosa

2017-07-04

Abstract
Objectives
To evaluate potential anti-biofilm agents for their ability to enhance the activity of antibiotics for local treatment of localized biofilm infections.
Methods
Staphylococcus aureus and Pseudomonas aeruginosa in vitro biofilm models were developed. The putative antibiotic enhancers N-acetylcysteine, acetylsalicylic acid, sodium salicylate, recombinant human deoxyribonuclease I, dispersin B, hydrogen peroxide and Johnson’s Baby Shampoo (JBS) were tested for their anti-biofilm activity alone and their ability to enhance the activity of antibiotics for 7 or 14 days, against 5 day old biofilms. The antibiotic enhancers were paired with rifampicin and clindamycin against S. aureus and gentamicin and ciprofloxacin against P. aeruginosa. Isolates from biofilms that were not eradicated were tested for antibiotic resistance.
Results
Antibiotic levels 10× MIC and 100× MIC significantly reduced biofilm, but did not consistently eradicate it. Antibiotics at 100× MIC with 10% JBS for 14 days was the only treatment to eradicate both staphylococcal and pseudomonal biofilms. Recombinant human deoxyribonuclease I significantly reduced staphylococcal biofilm. Emergence of resistance of surviving isolates was minimal and was often associated with the small colony variant phenotype.
Conclusions
JBS enhanced the activity of antibiotics and several other promising anti-biofilm agents were identified. Antibiotics with 10% JBS eradicated biofilms produced by both organisms. Such combinations might be useful in local treatment of localized biofilm infections.



Imbalance in mitochondrial dynamics and apoptosis in pregnancies among HIV-infected women on HAART with obstetric complications

2017-07-04

Abstract
Background
HIV infection and HAART trigger genetic and functional mitochondrial alterations leading to cell death and adverse clinical manifestations. Mitochondrial dynamics enable mitochondrial turnover and degradation of damaged mitochondria, which may lead to apoptosis.
Objectives
To evaluate markers of mitochondrial dynamics and apoptosis in pregnancies among HIV-infected women on HAART and determine their potential association with obstetric complications.
Methods
This controlled, single-site, observational study without intervention included 26 HIV-infected pregnant women on HAART and 18 control pregnancies and their newborns. Maternal PBMCs and neonatal cord blood mononuclear cells (CBMCs) were isolated at the first trimester of gestation and at delivery. The placenta was homogenized at 5% w/v. Mitochondrial dynamics, fusion events [mitofusin 2 (Mfn2)/β-actin] and fission events [dynamin-related protein 1 (Drp1/β-actin)] and apoptosis (caspase 3/β-actin) were assessed by western blot analysis.
Results
Obstetric complications were significantly more frequent in pregnancies among HIV-infected women [OR 5.00 (95% CI 1.21–20.70)]. Mfn2/β-actin levels in PBMCs from controls significantly decreased during pregnancy (202.13 ± 57.45%), whereas cases maintained reduced levels from the first trimester of pregnancy and no differences were observed in CBMCs. Mfn2/β-actin and Drp1/β-actin contents significantly decreased in the placenta of cases. Caspase 3/β-actin levels significantly increased during pregnancy in PBMCs of cases (50.00 ± 7.89%), remaining significantly higher than in controls. No significant differences in caspase 3/β-actin content of neonatal CBMCs were observed, but there was a slight increased trend in placenta from cases.
Conclusions
HIV- and HAART-mediated mitochondrial damage may be enhanced by decreased mitochondrial dynamics and increased apoptosis in maternal and placental compartments but not in the uninfected fetus. However, direct effects on mitochondrial dynamics and implication of apoptosis were not demonstrated in adverse obstetric outcomes.



Emerging multidrug resistance in community-associated Staphylococcus aureus involved in skin and soft tissue infections and nasal colonization

2017-07-03

Abstract
Background
Staphylococcus aureus is a major pathogen causing significant morbidity and mortality worldwide. The emergence of MDR S. aureus strains in the community setting has major implications in disease management. However, data regarding the occurrence and patterns of MDR community-associated S. aureus sub-clones is limited.
Objectives
To use whole-genome sequences to describe the diversity and distribution of resistance mechanisms among community-associated S. aureus isolates.
Methods
S. aureus isolates from skin and soft tissue infections (SSTIs) and nasal colonization were collected from patients within 10 primary care clinics from 2007 to 2015. The Illumina Miseq platform was used to determine the genome sequences for 144 S. aureus isolates. Phylogenetic and bioinformatics analyses were performed using in silico tools. The resistome was assembled and compared with the phenotypically derived antibiogram.
Results
Approximately one-third of S. aureus isolates in the South Texas primary care setting were MDR. A higher proportion of SSTI isolates were MDR in comparison with nasal colonization isolates. Individuals with MDR S. aureus SSTIs were more likely to be African American and obese. Furthermore, S. aureus populations are able to acquire and lose antimicrobial resistance genes. USA300 strains were differentiated by a stable chromosomal mutation in gyrA conferring quinolone resistance. The resistomes were highly predictive of antimicrobial resistance phenotypes.
Conclusions
These findings highlight the high prevalence and epidemiological factors associated with MDR S. aureus strains in the community setting and demonstrate the utility of next-generation sequencing to potentially quicken antimicrobial resistance detection and surveillance for targeted interventions.



Baicalein acts as a nephroprotectant that ameliorates colistin-induced nephrotoxicity by activating the antioxidant defence mechanism of the kidneys and down-regulating the inflammatory response

2017-07-03

Abstract
Background
Nephrotoxicity is the major adverse effect patients experience during colistin therapy. The development of effective nephroprotective agents that can be co-administered during polymyxin therapy remains a priority area in antimicrobial chemotherapy.
Objectives
To investigate the nephroprotective effect of baicalein, a component of the root of Scutellaria baicalensis, against colistin-induced nephrotoxicity using a mouse model.
Methods
C57BL/6 mice were randomly divided into the following groups: control, baicalein 100 mg/kg/day (administered orally), colistin (18 mg/kg/day administered intraperitoneally) and colistin (18 mg/kg/day) plus baicalein (25, 50 and 100 mg/kg/day). After 7 day treatments, histopathological damage, the markers of renal functions, oxidative stress and inflammation were examined. The expressions of Nrf2, HO-1 and NF-κB mRNAs were also further examined using quantitative RT–PCR examination.
Results
Baicalein co-administration markedly attenuated colistin-induced oxidative and nitrative stress, apoptosis, the infiltration of inflammatory cells, and caused decreases in IL-1β and TNF-α levels (all P <0.05 or 0.01) in the kidney tissues. Baicalein co-administration up-regulated expression of Nrf2 and HO-1 mRNAs and down-regulated the expression of NF-κB mRNA, compared with those in the colistin alone group.
Conclusions
To the best of our knowledge, this is the first study demonstrating the protective effect of baicalein on colistin-induced nephrotoxicity and apoptosis by activating the antioxidant defence mechanism in kidneys and down-regulating the inflammatory response. Our study highlights that oral baicalein could potentially ameliorate nephrotoxicity in patients undergoing polymyxin therapy.



Quantification of the risk of liver injury associated with flucloxacillin: a UK population-based cohort study

2017-07-01

Abstract
Background
Flucloxacillin is an established cause of liver injury. Despite this, there are a lack of published data on both the strength of association after adjusting for potential confounders, and the absolute incidence among different subgroups of patients.
Objectives
To assess the relative and absolute risks of liver injury following exposure to flucloxacillin and identify subgroups at potentially increased risk.
Methods
A cohort study between 1 January 2000 and 1 January 2012 using the UK Clinical Practice Research Datalink, including 1 046 699 people with a first prescription for flucloxacillin (861 962) or oxytetracycline (184 737). Absolute risks of experiencing both symptom-defined (jaundice) and laboratory-confirmed liver injury within 1–45 and 46–90 days of antibiotic initiation were estimated. Multivariable logistic regression was used to estimate 1–45 day relative effects.
Results
There were 183 symptom-defined cases (160 prescribed flucloxacillin) and 108 laboratory-confirmed cases (102 flucloxacillin). The 1–45 day adjusted risk ratio for laboratory-confirmed injury was 5.22 (95% CI 1.64–16.62) comparing flucloxacillin with oxytetracycline use. The 1–45 day risk of laboratory-confirmed liver injury was 8.47 per 100 000 people prescribed flucloxacillin (95% CI 6.64–10.65). People who received consecutive flucloxacillin prescriptions had a 1–45 day risk of jaundice of 39.00 per 100 000 (95% CI 26.85–54.77), while those aged >70 receiving consecutive prescriptions had a risk of 110.57 per 100 000 (95% CI 70.86–164.48).
Conclusions
The short-term risk of laboratory-confirmed liver injury was >5-fold higher after a flucloxacillin prescription than an oxytetracycline prescription. The risk of flucloxacillin-induced liver injury is particularly high within those aged >70 and those who receive multiple flucloxacillin prescriptions. The stratified risk estimates from this study could help guide clinical care.






Pretreatment HIV drug resistance results in virological failure and accumulation of additional resistance mutations in Ugandan children

2017-06-30

Abstract
Background
Pretreatment HIV drug resistance (PDR) can impair virological response to ART, jeopardizing effective treatment for children.
Methods
Children aged ≤12 years initiated first-line ART in Uganda during 2010–11. Baseline and 6 monthly viral load (VL) and genotypic resistance testing if VL >1000 copies/mL was done. The 2015 IAS-USA mutation list and Stanford algorithm were used to score drug resistance mutations (DRMs) and susceptibility. Virological failure (VF) was defined as two consecutive VLs >1000 copies/mL or death after 6 months of ART. Factors associated with failure and acquired drug resistance (ADR) were assessed in a logistic regression analysis.
Results
Among 317 children enrolled, median age was 4.9 years and 91.5% received NNRTI-based regimens. PDR was detected in 47/278 (16.9%) children, of whom 22 (7.9%) had resistance against their first-line regimen and were therefore on a partially active regimen. After 24 months of follow-up, 92/287 (32.1%) had experienced VF. Children with PDR had a higher risk of VF (OR 15.25, P <0.001) and ADR (OR 3.58, P =0.01).
Conclusions
Almost one-third of children experienced VF within 24 months of NNRTI-based first-line treatment. PDR was the strongest predictor of VF and ADR, and therefore presents a major threat in children. There is a need for ART regimens that maximize effectiveness of first-line therapy for long-term treatment success in the presence of PDR or incorporation of routine VL testing to detect VF and change treatment in time, in order to prevent clinical deterioration and accumulation of additional drug resistance. Children ≤3 years should be initiated on a PI-based regimen as per WHO guidelines.



Exploring the in vitro potential of celecoxib derivative AR-12 as an effective antiviral compound against four dengue virus serotypes

2017-06-28

Abstract
Objectives
With no clinically effective antiviral options available, infections and fatalities associated with dengue virus (DENV) have reached an alarming level worldwide. We have designed this study to evaluate the efficacy of the celecoxib derivative AR-12 against the in vitro replication of all four DENV serotypes.
Methods
Each 24-well plate of Vero cells infected with all four DENV serotypes, singly, was subjected to treatments with various doses of AR-12. Following 48 h of incubation, inhibitory efficacies of AR-12 against the different DENV serotypes were evaluated by conducting a virus yield reduction assay whereby DENV RNA copy numbers present in the collected supernatant were quantified using qRT–PCR. The underlying mechanism(s) possibly involved in the compound’s inhibitory activities were then investigated by performing molecular docking on several potential target human and DENV protein domains.
Results
The qRT–PCR data demonstrated that DENV-3 was most potently inhibited by AR-12, followed by DENV-1, DENV-2 and DENV-4. Our molecular docking findings suggested that AR-12 possibly exerted its inhibitory effects by interfering with the chaperone activities of heat shock proteins.
Conclusions
These results serve as vital information for the design of future studies involving in vitro mechanistic studies and animal models, aiming to decipher the potential of AR-12 as a potential therapeutic option for DENV infection.



pHTβ-promoted mobilization of non-conjugative resistance plasmids from Enterococcus faecium to Enterococcus faecalis

2017-06-22

Abstract
Objectives
To analyse the recombination events associated with conjugal mobilization of two multiresistance plasmids, pRUM17i48 and pLAG (formerly named pDO1-like), from Enterococcus faecium 17i48 to Enterococcus faecalis JH2-2.
Methods
The plasmids from two E. faecalis transconjugants (JH-4T, tetracycline resistant, and JH-8E, erythromycin resistant) and from the E. faecium donor (also carrying a pHTβ-like conjugative plasmid, named pHTβ17i48) were investigated by several methods, including PCR mapping and sequencing, S1-PFGE followed by Southern blotting and hybridization, and WGS.
Results
Two locations of repApHTβ were detected in both transconjugants, one on a ∼50 kb plasmid (as in the donor) and the other on plasmids of larger sizes. In JH-4T, WGS disclosed an 88.6 kb plasmid resulting from the recombination of pHTβ17i48 (∼50 kb) and a new plasmid, named pLAG (35.3 kb), carrying the tet(M), tet(L), lsa(E), lnu(B), spw and aadE resistance genes. In JH-8E, a 75 kb plasmid resulting from the recombination of pHTβ17i48 and pRUM17i48 was observed. In both cases, the cointegrates were apparently derived from replicative transposition of an IS1216 present in each of the multiresistance plasmids into pHTβ17i48. The cointegrates could resolve to yield the multiresistance plasmids and a pHTβ17i48 derivative carrying an IS1216 (unlike the pHTβ17i48 of the donor).
Conclusions
Our results completed the characterization of the multiresistance plasmids carried by the E. faecium 17i48, confirming the role of pHT plasmids in the mobilization of non-conjugative antibiotic resistance elements among enterococci. Results also revealed that mobilization to E. faecalis was associated with the generation of cointegrate plasmids promoted by IS1216-mediated transposition.



Benznidazole treatment safety: the Médecins Sans Frontières experience in a large cohort of Bolivian patients with Chagas' disease

2017-06-22

Abstract
Background
Up to half of patients with Chagas' disease under benznidazole treatment present adverse drug reactions (ADRs) and up to one-third do not complete standard treatment.
Objectives
To verify the incidence and possible factors associated with the suspension of benznidazole treatment in a large cohort of patients.
Methods
We included 2075 patients treated with benznidazole during the projects managed by the medical humanitarian organization Doctors Without Borders (Médecins Sans Frontières) in Bolivia from 2009 to 2013. Benznidazole treatment was provided two or three times per day for ∼60 days at 5–7.5 mg/kg/day. A multiple logistic regression model was developed to evaluate the factors associated with permanent suspension of benznidazole treatment.
Results
Permanent benznidazole treatment suspension occurred in 211 patients (10.2%) and the average time until permanent treatment suspension was 23 days. Multifactorial analysis revealed that female sex (adjusted OR = 1.70), moderate ADRs (adjusted OR = 10.57), mild ADRs (adjusted OR = 1.69) and skin disorders (adjusted OR = 4.18) were significantly associated with the permanent suspension of benznidazole treatment. Women with mild or moderate skin ADRs presented a probability of treatment interruption of 18.6% and 59.0%, respectively.
Conclusions
Benznidazole treatment was safe and a large proportion of patients were able to complete a full course of benznidazole treatment under close treatment surveillance. Female sex, skin disorders and mild and moderate ADRs were independently associated with the permanent suspension of benznidazole treatment. In particular, women with moderate skin ADRs had the highest risk of benznidazole treatment interruption.



Plasma concentrations of atovaquone given to immunocompromised patients to prevent Pneumocystis jirovecii

2017-06-22

Abstract
Objectives
Atovaquone is one of the alternatives to trimethoprim/sulfamethoxazole for prophylaxis of Pneumocystis jirovecii pneumonia (PCP) in immunocompromised patients. In volunteers, there was wide inter-individual variability in atovaquone bioavailability. The aim of this study was to assess the plasma concentrations of atovaquone in immunocompromised patients under PCP prophylaxis.
Methods
Adult haematology or HIV-positive patients receiving atovaquone (750 mg oral suspension twice a day) for PCP prophylaxis were included. Plasma concentrations were assessed using UV-HPLC, around 12 h after the evening dose (Cmin) and 1–5 h after the morning dose (Cmax).
Results
A total of 82 measurements were performed in 33 patients. This included 19 HSCT recipients, 7 haematology non-transplant patients and 7 HIV-positive patients. The median Cmin (IQR) was 11.3 μg/mL (6.2–27.8) and the median Cmax was 13.4 μg/mL (6.0–28.3). The Cmin and Cmax of atovaquone were not different between HIV-negative and HIV-positive patients, or between HSCT and non-HSCT patients. Atovaquone concentrations were not influenced by the co-administration of valaciclovir (n =20) or ciclosporin (n =11), by gut graft-versus-host disease (n =7) or by the intake of atovaquone with food. Nineteen of the 33 (58%) patients had Cmin <15 μg/mL, a threshold associated with a low rate of clinical response in PCP treatment.
Conclusions
Atovaquone is poorly absorbed in more than half of immunocompromised patients and its bioavailability varies between individuals. These unpredictable variations raise the question of therapeutic drug monitoring, in order to identify patients with low concentrations and those who could benefit from regimen adaptation or from alternatives.



Evolution and comparative genomics of pAQU-like conjugative plasmids in Vibrio species

2017-06-20

Abstract
Objectives
To investigate a set of MDR conjugative plasmids found in Vibrio species and characterize the underlying evolution process.
Methods
pAQU-type plasmids from Vibrio species were sequenced using both Illumina and PacBio platforms. Bioinformatics tools were utilized to analyse the typical MDR regions and core genes in the plasmids.
Results
The nine pAQU-type plasmids ranged from ∼160 to 206 kb in size and were found to harbour as many as 111 core genes encoding conjugative, replication and maintenance functions. Eight plasmids were found to carry a typical MDR region, which contained various accessory and resistance genes, including ISCR1-blaPER-1-bearing complex class 1 integrons, ISCR2-floR, ISCR2-tet(D)-tetR-ISCR2, qnrVC6, a Tn10-like structure and others associated with mobile elements. Comparison between a plasmid without resistance genes and different MDR plasmids showed that integration of different mobile elements, such as IS26, ISCR1, ISCR2, IS10 and IS6100, into the plasmid backbone was the key mechanism by which foreign resistance genes were acquired during the evolution process.
Conclusions
This study identified pAQU-type plasmids as emerging MDR conjugative plasmids among important pathogens from different origins in Asia. These findings suggest that aquatic bacteria constitute a major reservoir of resistance genes, which may be transmissible to other human pathogens during food production and processing.



Clinical sensitivity and specificity of the Check-Points Check-Direct ESBL Screen for BD MAX, a real-time PCR for direct ESBL detection from rectal swabs

2017-06-19

Abstract
Objectives
To determine the diagnostic accuracy of the Check-Direct ESBL Screen for BD MAX (ESBL qPCR) and an ESBL culture method to identify ESBLs directly from rectal swabs.
Methods
Rectal swabs were obtained from clinical patients by performing cross-sectional (point)prevalence measurements in three regional hospitals. Rectal swabs were analysed by direct culture (ChromID ESBL agar) and with the ESBL qPCR. Suspected ESBL-producing isolates were confirmed with the combination disc method and analysed by WGS.
Results
Out of 354 rectal swabs and 351 patients, 21 rectal swabs and 20 patients were positive for ESBL-producing isolates, resulting in a regional ESBL colonization prevalence of 5.7%. One rectal swab was false negative with the ESBL qPCR (blaTEM-12) and not covered by the ESBL qPCR. Eight ESBL qPCR-positive rectal swabs could not be confirmed by culture and were classified as false ESBL qPCR positive. The sensitivity and specificity of the ESBL qPCR were 95.2% (n =20) and 97.6% (n =323), respectively. When an optimal cycle threshold cut-off value of 37 was used, the ESBL qPCR displayed a sensitivity and specificity of 95.2% (n =20) and 98.8% (n =327), respectively (AUC = 0.975, 95% CI = 0.922-1).
Conclusions
This ESBL qPCR offers rapid direct detection of the most prevalent ESBL types (blaCTX-M group and blaSHV group) from rectal swabs. The relatively high false-positive rate renders this test the most suitable as a screening test in high-prevalence regions or in an outbreak setting where a fast result is essential.



Emergence of ceftazidime/avibactam non-susceptibility in an MDR Klebsiella pneumoniae isolate

2017-06-16

Abstract
Background
Avibactam is a novel broad-range β-lactamase inhibitor active against Ambler class A (including ESBL and KPC) and some Ambler class C and D (e.g. OXA-48) enzymes. We here report on the emergence of ceftazidime/avibactam resistance in clinical, multiresistant, OXA-48 and CTX-M-14-producing Klebsiella pneumoniae isolate DT12 during ceftazidime/avibactam treatment.
Methods and results
Comparative whole-genome sequence analysis identified two SNPs in the CTX-M-14-encoding gene leading to two amino acid changes (P170S and T264I). Compared with WT CTX-M-14, expression of the CTX-M-14Δ170Δ264 isoform in Escherichia coli led to a >64- and 16-fold increase in ceftazidime and ceftazidime/avibactam MICs, respectively, functionally linking the observed SNPs and elevated MICs. The mutated CTX-M-14 isoform exhibited augmented ceftazidime hydrolytic activity, which was a reasonable cause for impaired susceptibility to avibactam inhibition. The P170S exchange in CTX-M-14 was found in association with elevated ceftazidime/avibactam MICs for independent K. pneumoniae isolates, but was not sufficient for full resistance. Apparently, additional CTX-M-independent mechanisms contribute to ceftazidime/avibactam resistance in K. pneumoniae DT12.
Conclusions
This study on the molecular basis of ceftazidime/avibactam resistance in clinical K. pneumoniae emerging in vivo underscores the need for continuous monitoring of ceftazidime/avibactam susceptibility during therapy. Despite sustained inhibition of OXA-48, rapid development of CTX-M-14 isoforms exhibiting augmented ceftazidime hydrolytic activity may limit the usefulness of ceftazidime/avibactam monotherapies in infections caused by isolates carrying blaCTX-M-14 and blaOXA-48.



Sparing carbapenem usage

2017-06-15

Abstract
Background
Carbapenem resistance in Gram-negative bacteria is increasing in many countries and use of carbapenems and antibiotics to which resistance is linked should be reduced to slow its emergence. There are no directly equivalent antibiotics and the alternatives are less well supported by clinical trials. The few new agents are expensive.
Objectives
To provide guidance on strategies to reduce carbapenem usage.
Methods
A literature review was performed as described in the BSAC/HIS/BIA/IPS Joint Working Party on Multiresistant Gram-negative Infection Report.
Results
Older agents remain active against some of the pathogens, although expectations of broad-spectrum cover for empirical treatment have risen. Education, expert advice on treatment and antimicrobial stewardship can produce significant reductions in use.
Conclusions
More agents may need to be introduced onto the antibiotic formulary of the hospital, despite the poor quality of scientific studies in some cases.



Monotherapy with either dolutegravir or raltegravir fails to durably suppress HIV viraemia in humanized mice

2017-06-13

Abstract
Objectives
To compare the effectiveness of HIV integrase inhibitor monotherapy between raltegravir and dolutegravir as an approach to simplify therapy.
Methods
We evaluated and compared the efficacy of 20 week monotherapy with dolutegravir or raltegravir in humanized mice (HSC-NSG) infected with HIVBaL. Plasma HIV RNA was measured by quantitative RT–PCR (limit of detection of 150 copies/45 μL of plasma) and drug levels by LC-MS/MS. Escape viruses were genotyped and analysed for replication capacity and drug susceptibility in tissue culture.
Results
Drug-untreated control mice maintained constant viraemia throughout the study. Virus isolates from these mice were susceptible to both raltegravir (EC50 of <8 nM) and dolutegravir (EC50 of <1 nM). Mice treated with raltegravir or dolutegravir had plasma drug levels comparable to those in humans. Monotherapy with raltegravir initially suppressed HIV viraemia, but failed to maintain suppression in 4/4 mice. Viruses from raltegravir failing mice developed mutations G140G/S and Q148H/K, and were resistant to both raltegravir (EC50 values of >100 nM) and dolutegravir (EC50 values ranging from 8.8 to 13.3 nM). Monotherapy with dolutegravir suppressed viraemia in 5/5 of mice, but viraemia rebounded in one animal. The virus from this mouse had mutations E138K, G140S, Q148H, N155H and S230R, was highly resistant to both raltegravir (EC50 of >1000 nM) and dolutegravir (EC50 of 550 nM), and replicated to levels similar to those of control viruses in PBMCs.
Conclusions
Monotherapy with either raltegravir or dolutegravir does not consistently maintain HIV suppression, suggesting that dual therapy may be required in simplification strategies.



Impact of recurrent Clostridium difficile infection: hospitalization and patient quality of life

2017-06-13

Abstract
Objectives
Data quantifying outcomes of recurrent Clostridium difficile infection (rCDI) are lacking. We sought to determine the UK hospital resource use and health-related quality of life (HRQoL) associated with rCDI hospitalizations.
Patients and methods
A non-interventional study in six UK acute hospitals collected retrospective clinical and resource use data from medical records of 64 adults hospitalized for rCDI and 64 matched inpatient controls with a first episode only (f)CDI. Patients were observed from the index event (date rCDI/fCDI confirmed) for 28 days (or death, if sooner); UK-specific reference costs were applied. HRQoL was assessed prospectively in a separate cohort of 30 patients hospitalized with CDI, who completed the EQ-5D-3L questionnaire during their illness.
Results
The median total management cost (post-index) was £7539 and £6294 for rCDI and fCDI, respectively (cost difference, P =0.075); median length of stay was 21 days and 15.5 days, respectively (P =0.269). The median cost difference between matched rCDI and fCDI cases was £689 (IQR=£1873–£3954). Subgroup analysis demonstrated the highest median costs (£8542/patient) in severe rCDI cases. CDI management costs were driven primarily by hospital length of stay, which accounted for >85% of costs in both groups. Mean EQ-5D index values were 46% lower in CDI patients compared with UK population values (0.42 and 0.78, respectively); EQ visual analogue scale scores were 38% lower (47.82 and 77.3, respectively).
Conclusions
CDI has considerable impact on patients and healthcare resources. This multicentre study provides a contemporaneous estimate of the real-world UK costs associated with rCDI management, which are substantial and comparable to fCDI costs.



Addressing the key communication barriers between microbiology laboratories and clinical units: a qualitative study

2017-06-13

Abstract
Background
Many countries are on the brink of establishing antibiotic stewardship programmes in hospitals nationwide. In a previous study we found that communication between microbiology laboratories and clinical units is a barrier to implementing efficient antibiotic stewardship programmes in Norway. We have now addressed the key communication barriers between microbiology laboratories and clinical units from a laboratory point of view.
Methods
Qualitative semi-structured interviews were conducted with 18 employees (managers, doctors and technicians) from six diverse Norwegian microbiological laboratories, representing all four regional health authorities. Interviews were recorded and transcribed verbatim. Thematic analysis was applied, identifying emergent themes, subthemes and corresponding descriptions.
Results
The main barrier to communication is disruption involving specimen logistics, information on request forms, verbal reporting of test results and information transfer between poorly integrated IT systems. Furthermore, communication is challenged by lack of insight into each other’s area of expertise and limited provision of laboratory services, leading to prolonged turnaround time, limited advisory services and restricted opening hours.
Conclusions
Communication between microbiology laboratories and clinical units can be improved by a review of testing processes, educational programmes to increase insights into the other’s area of expertise, an evaluation of work tasks and expansion of rapid and point-of-care test services. Antibiotic stewardship programmes may serve as a valuable framework to establish these measures.



Evaluation of two automated systems for colistin susceptibility testing of carbapenem-resistant Acinetobacter baumannii clinical isolates

2017-06-12

Abstract
Background
Colistin is commonly needed for the treatment of infections due to carbapenem-resistant Acinetobacter baumannii (CRAB) and the determination of its in vitro activity is obviously important. However, the accurate routine antimicrobial susceptibility testing (AST) of colistin is still challenging. The only acceptable method for colistin AST is broth microdilution (BMD); disc and gradient diffusion assays are inappropriate and the performance of semi-automated systems has not been validated.
Objectives
In the present study, two commonly used semi-automated systems were evaluated for colistin AST of contemporary CRAB clinical isolates.
Methods
A total of 117 single-patient CRAB isolates collected randomly during 2015 from distinct tertiary hospitals located throughout Greece were tested. Colistin MICs were determined using the semi-automated systems Phoenix100 and Vitek2 and also agar dilution (AD), compared with the reference BMD.
Results
Colistin resistance rates for Phoenix100/Vitek2/AD/BMD were 15.4%/16.2%/35.9%/24.8%. The essential/categorical agreement rates were as follows: Phoenix100, 91.5%/88.9%; Vitek2, 88.9%/89.7%; and AD, 93.2%/87.2%. Alarmingly high rates of very major errors (VMEs) were observed for Phoenix100 (41.4%) and Vitek2 (37.9%), while major errors (MEs) were limited (1.1% by both systems); VMEs were much more common for isolates with MICs of 2 mg/L than for isolates with MICs of ≤ 1 mg/L, as determined by automated methods. AD produced considerably higher colistin MICs, yielding MEs of 15.9%.
Conclusions
Colistin resistance of A. baumannii is greatly underestimated by Phoenix100/Vitek2, potentially leading to inappropriate colistin administration. Colistin AST results by automated systems within the susceptible range, particularly those at the susceptibility breakpoint (2 mg/L), need to be validated by BMD.



Antibiotic susceptibility in vitro of Francisella tularensis subsp. holarctica isolates from Germany

2017-06-12

Abstract
Background
Tularaemia is a zoonotic disease caused by the bacterium Francisella tularensis. In Germany, the disease is still rare (e.g. 34 human cases reported in 2015). There is a lack of data about the susceptibility of F. tularensis strains to antibiotics, because many cases are diagnosed using serological assays only.
Objectives
The antibiotic susceptibility in vitro of F. tularensis subsp. holarctica strains isolated in Germany was assessed to determine whether the currently recommended empirical therapy is still adequate.
Methods
A total of 128 F. tularensis strains were investigated that were collected between 2005 and 2014 in Germany from wild animals, ticks and humans. All isolates were genotyped using real-time PCR assays targeting canonical SNPs, and antibiotic susceptibility was tested using MIC test strips on agar plates. MIC values were interpreted using CLSI breakpoints.
Results
The strains were susceptible to antibiotics commonly recommended for tularaemia therapy, i.e. aminoglycosides (MIC90 values: gentamicin 1 mg/L; streptomycin 4.0 mg/L), tetracyclines (MIC90 values: tetracycline 0.5 mg/L; doxycycline 1.5 mg/L) and quinolones (MIC90 value: ciprofloxacin 0.064 mg/L). Chloramphenicol (MIC90 value: 3.0 mg/L) may be of value in treatment of tularaemia meningitis. Ninety-four isolates were susceptible to erythromycin, which defines biovar I (genotypes B.4 and B.6); 34 were resistant (biovar II; genotype B.12).
Conclusions
The F. tularensis isolates investigated in this study showed the typical antibiotic susceptibility pattern that was previously observed in other countries. Therefore, recommendations for empirical antibiotic therapy of tularaemia can remain unchanged. However, antibiotic susceptibility testing of clinical isolates should be performed whenever possible.



Adequate plasma drug concentrations suggest that amoxicillin can be administered by continuous infusion using elastomeric pumps

2017-06-12

Abstract
Background
Elastomeric pumps can be useful for the administration of antibiotics in the outpatient setting.
Objectives
To determine amoxicillin degradation in elastomeric pumps, as well as the effectiveness of amoxicillin treatment administered by elastomeric pumps.
Methods
Antibiotic degradation was measured in elastomeric pumps filled with 6 g of amoxicillin in 240 mL of NaCl 0.9% by drawing samples at 12 h intervals when stored in the fridge for 48 h and when worn around the waist for 24 h. Subsequently nine patients were treated with continuous infusions of 8 or 12 g of amoxicillin per day. Plasma amoxicillin concentrations were measured on each visit to the outpatient parenteral antibiotic therapy unit. Clinical outcome was verified 3 months after the end of treatment.
Results
Amoxicillin degradation in elastomeric pumps reached 10% after 48 h in the fridge and an additional 30% when worn around the waist for 24 h. Mean plasma drug concentrations achieved with 12 g of amoxicillin per day were 18.5 mg/L (95% CI 13.5–23.5), which is largely above the MIC of amoxicillin-susceptible bacteria. Nine patients treated for various complicated infections were cured and had no unexpected adverse effects.
Conclusions
Adequate plasma drug concentrations and favourable clinical outcomes suggest that amoxicillin can be administered by continuous infusion using elastomeric pumps. This treatment modality does not fulfil formal requirements regarding pharmaceutical stability, but the resulting safety impact in patients is probably limited. Therapeutic drug monitoring and a close clinical follow-up are recommended if this route of administration is chosen.



FRI-2 carbapenemase-producing Enterobacter cloacae complex in the UK

2017-06-10

Abstract
Objectives
Detection of rarer carbapenemases is challenging, as it requires molecular assays with comprehensive coverage or the use of phenotypic methods for the detection of carbapenemase activity. We describe a new class A carbapenemase, FRI-2, in an Enterobacter cloacae complex isolate following implementation of an in-house multiplex PCR for the detection of ‘rare’ class A carbapenemases.
Methods
MICs were determined by agar dilution. A carbapenem-resistant E. cloacae complex isolate was tested by PCR for the class A carbapenemases blaKPC, blaFRI, blaIMI, blaGES and blaSME. Carbapenemase activity was assessed using Carba NP and the carbapenem inactivation method. Whole genome and plasmid analyses of the clinical isolate and the FRI-2 transformant were performed by WGS, respectively. Typing was carried out by PFGE.
Results
The E. cloacae complex isolate showed resistance to imipenem (MIC = 16 mg/L), meropenem (MIC = 8 mg/L) and ertapenem (MIC = 8 mg/L), but remained susceptible to piperacillin/tazobactam (MIC = 8 mg/L). Carbapenemase activity was confirmed in the isolate by both phenotypic methods. A blaFRI-1-like gene was detected by PCR and analysis of WGS data of the clinical isolate identified an ORF of 885 bp, which showed 97% nucleotide identity with blaFRI-1 and was named blaFRI-2. WGS of the transformant indicated blaFRI-2 was located on a 108 kb IncF/IncR plasmid. The FRI-2-positive E. cloacae complex isolate belonged to a novel ST (ST829).
Conclusions
The possible circulation of rarer carbapenemases in clinical settings highlights the role of phenotypic tests to detect carbapenemase activity when molecular assays are negative for the ‘big 5’ carbapenemase families.



In vitro activity of the novel antifungal compound F901318 against difficult-to-treat Aspergillus isolates

2017-06-10

Abstract
Background
F901318 is a new antifungal agent with a novel mechanism of action with activity against Aspergillus species. We investigated the in vitro activity of F901318 against a collection of Aspergillus isolates.
Methods
A total of 213 Aspergillus isolates were used in this study. A total of 143 Aspergillus fumigatus sensu stricto isolates were used, of which 133 were azole resistant [25 TR34/L98H; 25 TR46/Y121F/T289A; 33 A. fumigatus with cyp51A-associated point mutations (25 G54, 1 G432 and 7 M220); and 50 azole-resistant A. fumigatus without known resistance mechanisms]. Ten azole-susceptible A. fumigatus isolates were used as WT controls. The in vitro activity was also determined against Aspergillus calidoustus (25 isolates), Aspergillus flavus (10), Aspergillus nidulans (10) and Aspergillus tubingensis (25). F901318 activity was compared with that of itraconazole, voriconazole, posaconazole, isavuconazole, amphotericin B and anidulafungin. Minimum effective concentrations and MICs were determined using the EUCAST broth microdilution method.
Results
F901318 was active against all tested isolates: A. fumigatus WT, MIC90 0.125 mg/L (range 0.031–0.125); TR34/L98H,TR46/Y121F/T289A and azole resistant without known resistance mechanisms, MIC90 0.125 mg/L (range 0.031–0.25); A. fumigatus with cyp51A-associated point mutations, MIC90 0.062 mg/L (range 0.015–0.125); and other species, A. calidoustus MIC90 0.5 mg/L (range 0.125–0.5), A. flavus MIC90 0.062 mg/L (range 0.015–0.62), A. nidulans MIC90 0.125 mg/L (range 0.062–0.25) and A. tubingensis MIC90 0.062 mg/L (range 0.015–0.25).
Conclusions
F901318 showed potent and consistent in vitro activity against difficult-to-treat Aspergillus spp. with intrinsic and acquired antifungal resistance due to known and unknown resistance mechanisms, suggesting no significant implications of azole resistance mechanisms for the mode of action of F901318.



Optimizing preoperative prophylaxis in patients with reported β-lactam allergy: a novel extension of antimicrobial stewardship

2017-06-10

Abstract
Background
Use of alternative second-line antibiotics is associated with adverse events in patients reporting β-lactam allergy. In the perioperative setting, we hypothesized that structured allergy histories, without the use of skin testing, can reduce alternative prophylactic antibiotic use.
Objectives
Assess the impact of structured allergy histories on patients with self-reported β-lactam allergy (SRBA) undergoing elective surgical procedures.
Methods
Structured allergy histories were performed by a pharmacist and reviewed with an infectious diseases physician. Patients were deemed safe to proceed with cefazolin prophylaxis if they did not describe a history of type I-mediated or severe reaction. Antibiotic prophylaxis orders (with approval by the surgical team) were scheduled into the computerized order entry system to be given prior to first incision of the operation.
Results
Of the 485 patients with SRBA that underwent structured allergy histories, 117 (24.1%) reported a type I-mediated allergy history; 267 (55.1%) patients received cefazolin prophylaxis and none subsequently experienced an adverse reaction. After intervention implementation, the overall use of alternative antibiotic prophylaxis at Michael Garron Hospital (Toronto, Canada) among those with SRBA decreased from 81.9% to 55.9%. This drop was associated with the number of monthly assessments (P < 0.001) in a regression analysis.
Conclusions
Using a simple structured history and the principles of prospective audit and feedback, we were able to increase the use of cefazolin perioperative prophylaxis without any serious adverse events and in the absence of skin testing or diagnostic challenges.



Antiretroviral unbound concentration during pregnancy: piece of interest in the puzzle?

2017-06-07

Abstract
Atazanavir and darunavir total concentrations (drug bound to plasma proteins plus unbound drug) progressively decrease during pregnancy. This pharmacokinetic variation leads physicians to recommend increasing doses. Conversely, the unbound concentration (Cu), i.e. the pharmacologically active form of the drug, remains unchanged. The explanation of this desynchronization lies in the fact that the clearance of the unbound form, corresponding to the intrinsic metabolic capacity of the hepatocytes, is the only factor driving Cu, and is constant during pregnancy. The attention of HIV physicians should be attracted to this aspect of pharmacokinetics, which is often incompletely understood and could lead to inadequate dose adjustment, which could then cause overexposure of the foetus for many months, with unknown consequences.



Genetic alterations responsible for reduced susceptibility to vancomycin in community-associated MRSA strains of ST72

2017-06-07

Abstract
Objectives
We previously reported the first case of vancomycin treatment failure due to development of vancomycin-intermediate resistance in a patient with an MRSA of ST72, a community genotype in Korea. We investigated two isogenic MRSA strains from this patient, who experienced treatment failure with vancomycin and rifampicin.
Methods
We tracked the genetic alterations that confer reduced susceptibility to vancomycin on those two isogenic MRSA strains by WGS.
Results
Five non-synonymous mutations were identified, including rpoB (H481Y), dprA (G196C), femA (F92C), vraR (E127K) and agrC (E391stop). We further studied the role of a mutation of vraR in reduced susceptibility to vancomycin. Introduction of the mutated vraR (E127K) into a vancomycin-susceptible Staphylococcus aureus strain resulted in an increase in vraSR mRNA expression and vancomycin MIC and development of the hetero-VISA phenotype, which was confirmed by the population analysis profile (PAP)/AUC. Electron microscopy showed increased cell wall thickness in the strains with mutated vraR.
Conclusions
Based on the genomic data, molecular experiments and PAP and cell wall analyses, we propose that a single mutation of vraR is associated with the reduced susceptibility to vancomycin in MRSA and further treatment failure.



Comparison of phenotypic and WGS-derived antimicrobial resistance profiles of Shigella sonnei isolated from cases of diarrhoeal disease in England and Wales, 2015

2017-06-07

Abstract
Objectives
Phenotypic and genotypic methods for the detection of antimicrobial resistance (AMR) in Shigella sonnei in England and Wales were compared and evaluated.
Methods
WGS data from 341 isolates of S. sonnei isolated between June 2015 and January 2016 were mapped to genes known to be associated with phenotypic AMR. Antimicrobial susceptibility testing was performed on all viable isolates (n =335).
Results
Fifteen of 335 isolates had a discrepancy between phenotypic and genotypic testing for 1 of the 10 antimicrobial classes tested, equating to 15 (0.45%) discordant results out of a possible 3350 isolate/antimicrobial combinations. All 15 mismatched results were genotypically resistant but phenotypically susceptible. Eleven of the 15 discrepancies were observed in streptomycin resistance profiles. The most common resistance profile was trimethoprim, sulphonamides, tetracyclines and streptomycin, occurring in 97 (28.4%) isolates. Resistances to ciprofloxacin and the third-generation cephalosporins, not detected in England and Wales prior to 2002, were identified in 18.2% and 12% of isolates, respectively. Three hundred and four (89.1%) isolates were MDR. There was no significant association between any of the AMR determinants tested and recent foreign travel in male or female cases. The number of isolates of S. sonnei harbouring blaTEM-1 and ermB/mphA was significantly higher in men who reported no recent travel outside the UK.
Conclusions
The use of WGS for routine public health surveillance is a reliable method for rapid detection of emerging AMR in isolates of S. sonnei.



Developing a local antimicrobial resistance action plan: the Cornwall One Health Antimicrobial Resistance Group

2017-06-07

Abstract
Objectives
The UK Five Year Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) Strategy was published in September 2013 and recommended a One Health approach emphasizing the importance of collaboration to tackle AMR. We describe the inauguration of what we believe to be the first regional One Health group established in the UK. The purpose of the group was to ensure the implementation of a coordinated Cornwall-wide response to the UK AMR Strategy and we describe the outputs of the group to date.
Methods
The Cornwall Antimicrobial Resistance Group was set up as a sub-group of the Health & Wellbeing Board’s Health Protection Committee. Stakeholders reviewed the key objectives set out within the Five Year AMR strategy, identified local priorities and existing work streams within Cornwall, and completed a gap analysis. The annual work plan was developed from the gap analysis and provided a foundation for improved coordination of One Health antimicrobial stewardship (AMS) activity in Cornwall.
Results
To date, outputs from the group can be arranged under the following themes: education and engagement with the public; education and engagement with healthcare workers and veterinarians; and a comprehensive AMS programme for all sectors. The group continues to grow in size with wider stakeholder engagement and increased variety of work streams.
Conclusions
This unique group facilitates discussions across sectors, which has enabled the sharing of knowledge, ideas and resources, stimulated local AMS initiatives, and ensured a platform for the development of future AMR and AMS work.



Hafnia , an enterobacterial genus naturally resistant to colistin revealed by three susceptibility testing methods

2017-06-06

Abstract
Objectives
To determine the susceptibility to colistin of Hafnia alvei and Hafnia paralvei, and to compare methods for colistin resistance detection in the Hafnia genus.
Methods
A collection of 25 Hafnia isolates was studied. Species were identified by using 16S rRNA gene sequencing with subsequent phylogeny analysis. Susceptibility to colistin was determined using the broth microdilution (BMD) reference method, the Phoenix automated system, the Rapid Polymyxin NP test, the Etest system and the disc diffusion method.
Results
The collection consisted of 15 H. alvei and 10 H. paralvei isolates. Based on the 16S rRNA analysis, a close relationship of the Hafnia genus with naturally colistin-resistant enterobacterial genera (Proteus, Morganella, Providencia and Serratia) was identified. Susceptibility testing performed using the BMD method, the Phoenix automated system and the Rapid Polymyxin NP test revealed a high rate of colistin resistance (96%). Underestimation of colistin resistance using Etest strips (72%) and the disc diffusion method (0%) was observed.
Conclusions
The high rate of colistin resistance observed within the Hafnia genus and its close phylogenetic relationship with naturally colistin-resistant genera suggest that Hafnia is a naturally colistin-resistant enterobacterial genus.






Substitutions in PBP3 confer resistance to both ampicillin and extended-spectrum cephalosporins in Haemophilus parainfluenzae as revealed by site-directed mutagenesis and gene recombinants

2017-06-05

Abstract
Objectives
To determine the association of amino acid substitutions in PBP3 with β-lactam susceptibility in Haemophilus parainfluenzae.
Methods
Single and multiple amino acid mutations at positions 385, 511 and 526 were introduced into PBP3 of a β-lactam-susceptible H. parainfluenzae strain using site-directed mutagenesis. Recombinants were also generated using PCR-amplified ftsI from clinical strains encoding multiple amino acid substitutions. MICs of ampicillin, cefuroxime, cefotaxime and ceftriaxone were determined using Etest®.
Results
Transformation of a susceptible strain with ftsI from clinical strains encoding four substitutions in the transpeptidase region of PBP3 conferred resistance to ampicillin, but not to cephalosporins. Introduction of ftsI from a clinical strain encoding eight substitutions conferred resistance to ampicillin, cefotaxime and ceftriaxone. MICs for recombinants were lower than those for the donor strains. Using site-directed mutagenesis, no single substitution conferred resistance to the tested β-lactams, although V511A increased the MIC of cefuroxime to the intermediate category for intravenous administration. Recombinants encoding N526K/H/S in combination with V511A were resistant to ampicillin. Substitution S385T increased the MICs of third-generation cephalosporins if V511A was also present.
Conclusions
Substitutions in PBP3 are sufficient to confer resistance to both ampicillin and third-generation cephalosporins in H. parainfluenzae. A combination of substitutions at positions Val-511 and Asn-526 confers resistance to ampicillin. Resistance to third-generation cephalosporins probably requires more than four substitutions in PBP3.






Isolation of azole-resistant Aspergillus fumigatus from the environment in the south-eastern USA

2017-06-01

Abstract
Background
Azole resistance in isolates of the fungus Aspergillus fumigatus has been associated with agricultural use of azole fungicides. Environmental isolation of resistant isolates has been reported in Asia, Africa, Europe and South America.
Objectives
To determine whether A. fumigatus isolates containing TR34/L98H or TR46/Y121F/T289A can be found in fields in the USA treated with agricultural azoles.
Methods
Crop debris was collected and screened for A. fumigatus. All A. fumigatus isolates were screened for azole resistance. The CYP51A gene of azole-resistant isolates was sequenced. The population structure of a subset of isolates was determined using microsatellite typing.
Results
This article identifies azole-resistant A. fumigatus isolates containing the TR34/L98H mutation in an experimental peanut field that had been treated with azole fungicides.
Conclusions
These findings suggest the development of resistance to azole antifungals in A. fumigatus may be present where agricultural azoles are used in the USA.



Darunavir concentrations in CSF of HIV-infected individuals when boosted with cobicistat versus ritonavir

2017-06-01

Abstract
Objectives
Cobicistat and ritonavir have different inhibitory profiles for drug transporters that could impact the distribution of co-administered drugs. We compared darunavir concentrations in CSF when boosted by cobicistat versus ritonavir relative to plasma concentrations and with WT HIV-1 IC50 and IC90.
Methods
An open, single-arm, sequential clinical trial (NCT02503462) where paired CSF and blood samples were taken from seven HIV-infected patients presenting with HIV-associated neurocognitive disorders (HAND) and treated with a darunavir/ritonavir (800/100 mg) once-daily regimen. Ritonavir was subsequently replaced by cobicistat and paired CSF and blood samples were obtained from the same patients after treatment with the darunavir/cobicistat (800/150 mg) once-daily regimen. Darunavir concentrations at the end of the dosing interval were quantified by LC-MS/MS.
Results
The median (IQR) darunavir concentrations in CSF with ritonavir and cobicistat boosting were 16.4 ng/mL (8.6–20.3) and 15.9 ng/mL (6.7–31.6), respectively (P = 0.58). The median (IQR) darunavir CSF:plasma ratios with ritonavir and cobicistat boosting were 0.007 (0.006–0.012) and 0.011 (0.007–0.015), respectively (P = 0.16). Darunavir concentrations in CSF exceeded the darunavir IC50 and IC90 by a median of 9.2- and 6.7-fold with ritonavir boosting, and by 8.9- and 6.5-fold with cobicistat boosting, respectively. All patients had darunavir CSF concentrations above the target inhibitory concentrations and remained virologically suppressed in the CSF and plasma.
Conclusions
This small study shows that cobicistat and ritonavir give comparable effective darunavir concentrations in CSF, thus suggesting that these boosters can be used interchangeably in once-daily darunavir regimens.



Pharmacokinetics of nebulized colistin methanesulfonate in critically ill patients

2017-06-01

Abstract
Objectives
Optimal dosing for nebulized colistin methanesulfonate (CMS), the prodrug of colistin, is unknown. We describe the pulmonary and systemic pharmacokinetics of CMS and colistin following nebulization of 0.5 million IU (MIU) of CMS in ventilated patients.
Methods
Twelve critically ill patients received 0.5 MIU of CMS administered every 8 h as 30 min nebulizations. Blood samples were collected immediately before and until 8 h after first nebulization; mini-bronchoalveolar lavage (mini-BAL) was performed at 1 and 5 h or 3 and 8 h (six patients each) post-dose. Pharmacokinetic analysis was performed for CMS and colistin plasma concentrations using a non-compartmental method. ClinicalTrials.gov: NCT01060891.
Results
After nebulization, CMS concentrations in epithelial lining fluid (ELF) were much higher (100- to 1000-fold) than those in plasma. Concentrations of colistin in ELF should be considered with caution because when <6 mg/L in BAL, colistin bound to mini-BAL devices. Nevertheless, CMS and colistin concentrations in ELF were much lower than expected from previous results with a 2 MIU dose. From CMS plasma pharmacokinetics it was shown that CMS systemic bioavailability was only slightly decreased for the 0.5 MIU dose compared with 2 MIU.
Conclusions
This study shows that CMS concentrations were much higher (100- to 1000-fold) in ELF than in plasma after a 0.5 MIU aerosol of CMS, but much lower (10-fold) than expected from previous results with a 2 MIU dose. Therefore, until new pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic assessments of the treatment of ventilator-associated pneumonia with nebulized CMS are performed, the 2 MIU dose should be preferred to the 0.5 MIU dose.



Prospective, randomized, double-blind, Phase 2 dose-ranging study comparing efficacy and safety of imipenem/cilastatin plus relebactam with imipenem/cilastatin alone in patients with complicated urinary tract infections

2017-06-01

Abstract
Objectives
The β-lactamase inhibitor relebactam can restore imipenem activity against imipenem non-susceptible pathogens.
Methods
To explore relebactam’s safety, tolerability and efficacy, we conducted a randomized (1:1:1), controlled, Phase 2 trial comparing imipenem/cilastatin+relebactam 250 mg, imipenem/cilastatin+relebactam 125 mg and imipenem/cilastatin alone in adults with complicated urinary tract infections (cUTI) or acute pyelonephritis, regardless of baseline pathogen susceptibility. Treatment was administered intravenously every 6 h for 4–14 days, with optional step-down to oral ciprofloxacin. The primary endpoint was favourable microbiological response rate (pathogen eradication) at discontinuation of intravenous therapy (DCIV) in the microbiologically evaluable (ME) population. Non-inferiority of imipenem/cilastatin+relebactam over imipenem/cilastatin alone was defined as lower bounds of the 95% CI for treatment differences being above –15%.
Results
At DCIV, 71 patients in the imipenem/cilastatin + 250 mg relebactam, 79 in the imipenem/cilastatin + 125 mg relebactam and 80 in the imipenem/cilastatin-only group were ME; 51.7% had cUTI and 48.3% acute pyelonephritis. Microbiological response rates were 95.5%, 98.6% and 98.7%, respectively, confirming non-inferiority of both imipenem/cilastatin + relebactam doses to imipenem/cilastatin alone. Clinical response rates were 97.1%, 98.7% and 98.8%, respectively. All 23 ME patients with imipenem non-susceptible pathogens had favourable DCIV microbiological responses (100% in each group). Among all 298 patients treated, 28.3%, 29.3% and 30.0% of patients, respectively, had treatment-emergent adverse events. The most common treatment-related adverse events across groups (1.0%–4.0%) were diarrhoea, nausea and headache.
Conclusions
Imipenem/cilastatin + relebactam (250 or 125 mg) was as effective as imipenem/cilastatin alone for treatment of cUTI. Both relebactam-containing regimens were well tolerated. (NCT01505634).



Risk factors for acquisition of CTX-M genes in pilgrims during Hajj 2013 and 2014

2017-05-26

Abstract
Background
Mass gatherings, especially the Hajj pilgrimage, provide favourable conditions for bacterial transmission among participants, which might contribute to the international spread of ESBL-producing Enterobacteriaceae (ESBL-E).
Objectives
We conducted an analysis aimed at investigating risk factors for CTX-M gene (blaCTX-M) rectal carriage in 2013 and 2014 Hajj pilgrims.
Methods
A total of 218 pilgrims provided paired pre- and post-Hajj rectal samples (2013, 129 pilgrims; 2014, 89 pilgrims). CTX-M genes in rectal samples were identified by PCR and confirmed by sequencing. Pilgrims’ characteristics, including possible factors relating to ESBL acquisition, were collected and analysed using XLSTAT version 2016.05.34687 (Addinsoft). For the univariate analysis, the frequencies of nominal data were compared using Pearson’s χ2 test and Fisher’s exact test, and the means of quantitative data were compared using Student’s t-test. A difference was considered significant when P <0.05. For multivariate analysis, a logistic regression was carried out, considering all the significant data in univariate analysis.
Results
The acquisition rates of CTX-M genes among pilgrims during the 2013 and 2014 Hajj were similar, at 31.0% and 34.83%, respectively. Being of Moroccan origin, having chronic conditions, shortness of breath or diarrhoea, and using β-lactams were associated with higher CTX-M gene acquisition, while being of Algerian origin and using macrolides were associated with lower CTX-M acquisition in univariate analysis. Shortness of breath and diarrhoea remained associated with increased CTX-M gene acquisition and consumption of macrolides with lower CTX-M gene acquisition in multivariate analysis.
Conclusions
The possible gut colonization by CTX-M-type ESBL bacteria should be taken into account when prescribing empirical antibiotic treatments for infections that occur in returning Hajj pilgrims.












Development of carbapenem resistance in Pseudomonas aeruginosa is associated with OprD polymorphisms, particularly the amino acid substitution at codon 170

2017-05-23

Abstract
Objectives
Pan-susceptible Pseudomonas aeruginosa (PSPA) clinical isolates carrying an OprD with loop 7 shortening (the group-1A allele) were found to rapidly develop carbapenem resistance under continuous selection pressure. We further studied whether OprD polymorphisms are associated with the potential to develop carbapenem resistance.
Methods
OprD amino acid sequences of 126 PSPA clinical isolates were analysed to determine their STs using P. aeruginosa strain PAO1 as the control strain. Site-directed mutagenesis was performed in PAO1 to generate polymorphisms of interest. A disc diffusion method was used to select carbapenem-resistant variants from the mutant strains. Expression levels of oprD were determined by quantitative RT–PCR. MICs of carbapenems were determined by Etest.
Results
Forty-eight (38.1%) of the tested isolates carried the group-1A allele. Another two major STs, C1 and C2, both of which harboured an F170L polymorphism, were found in 21 (16.7%) and 39 (31.0%) isolates, respectively. The PAO1 type was also found in 14 (11.1%) isolates. Under continuous selective pressure, isolates of most STs developed carbapenem resistance at different numbers of passaging events; only those belonging to the PAO1 type remained susceptible. However, PAO1 mutants carrying either the oprD group-1A allele or the OprD-F170L polymorphism were able to develop carbapenem resistance. Reduced oprD expression triggered by continuous imipenem challenge was found in PAO1 mutants, but not in the PAO1 WT strain.
Conclusions
OprD polymorphisms, particularly the F170L substitution and the specific shortening in loop 7, appear to determine the potential for P. aeruginosa to develop carbapenem resistance.



A novel GoldNano Carb test for rapid phenotypic detection of carbapenemases, particularly OXA type, in Enterobacteriaceae, Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Acinetobacter spp.

2017-05-23

Abstract
Objectives
To develop a simple gold nanoparticle (AuNP)-based colorimetric test, GoldNano Carb (GoldC), for detecting carbapenemase production in Gram-negative bacteria, compared with updated Carba NP (CNP) and CarbAcineto NP (CAcNP) tests by using PCR methods as gold standard.
Methods
Ninety-nine carbapenemase-producing Enterobacteriaceae (CPE), Pseudomonas spp. and Acinetobacter spp. isolates and 89 non-CPE isolates were tested by the GoldC and CNP. Additionally, the CAcNP was performed in the Acinetobacter spp. isolates. The final imipenem (imipenem/cilastatin form) concentration was 5 mg/mL for all three tests. For the GoldC, the imipenem powder was added directly to bacterial cell suspension in distilled water prior to detection of acid product by the citrate-capped AuNP solution. An AuNP change from red to purple, blue or green indicates carbapenemase activity.
Results
The GoldC detected all carbapenemase producers except one OXA-23-like producer (99.0% sensitivity), whereas 11 carbapenemase producers (10 Acinetobacter and 1 P. aeruginosa) were CNP negative (88.9% sensitivity). However, the GoldC and CNP provided 100% and 98.6% sensitivity, respectively, for the CPE and Pseudomonas spp. Both tests gave one false positive from CTX-M-1-like-producing Enterobacter spp. (98.9% specificity). The GoldC and CAcNP detected 96.7% and 93.3% of the Acinetobacter spp. isolates, respectively. Interestingly, times to positivity by the GoldC were markedly shorter than those by the CNP (76.8% versus 36.2% positive at 5 min) and CAcNP (43.3% at 5 min versus 20% within 30 min).
Conclusions
The GoldC is fast, easy, highly sensitive and inexpensive (∼$0.25 per test), suggesting that it may be suitable for routine carbapenemase detection in low-resource settings for infection control or epidemiological purposes.