Molecular screening of virulence genes in high-level gentamicin-resistant Enterococcus faecalis and Enterococcus faecium isolated from clinical specimens in Northwest Iran

Hasani, A.; Sharifi, Y.; Ghotaslou, R.; Naghili, B.; Aghazadeh, M.; Milani, M.; Bazmani, A.
April 2012
Indian Journal of Medical Microbiology;Apr2012, Vol. 30 Issue 2, p175
Academic Journal
Purpose: The present study screened clinical isolates of Enterococcus faecalis and Enterococcus faecium to determine the prevalence of high-level gentamicin-resistant enterococci and the potential virulence genes among them. Materials and Methods: Clinical enterococcal isolates were obtained from three university teaching hospitals in Northwest Iran. Isolated enterococci were identifi ed phenotypically followed by antibiotic susceptibility testing. Multiplex PCR was performed for the detection of genus, species-specifi c targets, gentamicin resistance, and potential virulence genes. Results: Of 220 enterococcal isolates, 133 (60.45%) isolates were identifi ed as high-level gentamicin-resistant. Of these isolates, 79 (59.4%) and 54 (40.6%) were E. faecalis and E. faecium, respectively. All high-level gentamicin-resistant strains carried aac(6')Ie-aph(2")Ia. Of 220 isolates, 65.9% were positive for gelE, and 55%, 53.6%, 51.8%, and 49.5% of isolates were positive for cpd, asa1, ace, and esp, respectively. Phenotypically detected β-haemolytic strains (19.54%) were found to possess cylLlsMAB. Conclusion: The study revealed that high-level gentamicin-resistance was related to the presence of aac(6')Ie-aph(2")Ia. Isolated enterococci harboured potential virulence determinants, which were more common among E. faecalis than among E. faecium strains.


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