Multidrug resistance (MDR), virulence and transferable elements potentiate Pseudomonas aeruginosa’s role as an opportunistic pathogen creating a high risk for public health. In this study, we evaluated the possible association of multidrug resistance, virulence factors and integrons with intrahospital P. aeruginosa strains isolated from patients at Cumana hospital, Venezuela. Relevant clinical-epidemiological data were collected to study 176 strains (2009-2016) isolated from different hospital units. Bacterial resistance was classified as susceptible, low-level resistant (LDR), multidrug resistant (MDR) and extensively drug-resistant (XDR). Most strains produced pyoverdine, DNase, gelatinase and hemolysin. Around 73% of the strains showed some type of movement. MDR and XDR strains increased from 2009 (24.2% and 4.8%, respectively) to 2016 (53.1% and 18.8%); while LDR decreased from 64.5% to 6.3%. The exoU and exoS genes were found in a significant number of strains (38.1 and 7.4%, respectively). Class I integrons were detected in 35.8% of the strains and the frequency was associated with resistance (42.9, 22.4, 41.4 and 61.9%, for susceptible, LDR, MDR and XDR, respectively). The MDR/XDR strains were positively associated with hemolysins and exoU, but negatively associated with bacterial twitching. MDR/XDR phenotypes were also associated with the Intensive Care Unit (ICU), septicemia, bronchial infection and diabetic foot ulcers, as well as long hospital stay (≥10 days) and previous antimicrobial treatment. High frequency of MDR/XDR strains and their association with class I integrons and virulence factors can increase the infection potential, as well as morbidity and mortality of patients attending this hospital and could spread infection to the community, creating a health risk for the region.
Rodulfo, H., Arcia, A., Hernández, A., Michelli, E., Del Valle Martinez, D., Guzman, M., … De Donato, M. (2019). Virulence factors and integrons are associated with MDR and XDR phenotypes in nosocomial strains of pseudomonas aeruginosa in a venezuelan university hospital. Revista Do Instituto de Medicina Tropical de Sao Paulo, 61. https://doi.org/10.1590/s1678-9946201961020