Characteristics of epidemic and sporadic strains of Acinetobacter baumannii isolated in Abu Dhabi hospitals

Ágnes Sonnevend, Akela Ghazawi, Noura Al Munthari, Martin Pitout, Mohammad Baraa Hamadeh, Rayhan Hashmey, Safinaz Khaleel Girgis, Farrukh Amin Sheikh, Mohamed Al Haj, Nico Nagelkerke, Tibor Pál

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24 Citations (Scopus)


We compared the antibiotic susceptibility, clonal lineages and resistance genes of singleton Acinetobacter baumannii strains to those of isolates representing repeatedly encountered molecular types in five Abu Dhabi hospitals. One hundred and ten clinically relevant, non-repeat strains were typed by blaOXA-51-like allele sequencing and by PFGE, and selected isolates also by MLST. Resistance was assessed by MIC determinations and by disc diffusion. Genotyping was carried out by PCR, targeting 28 genes. The 80 epidemic strains belonged to worldwide lineages 1, 2 and 7, representing 11 pulsotypes and 9 genotypes, while the 30 sporadic isolates exhibited a high level of genetic variability and, with the exception of a small subgroup, were not associated with any recognized epidemic lineages. All epidemic subtypes carried the ISAba1-linked blaOXA-23 gene, and harboured the int, the blaPER and the armA genes significantly more frequently than their sporadic counterparts. They were all multi-drug resistant, including non-susceptibility to carbepenems, and were often extensively drug resistant, a phenomenon rarely seen among sporadic strains. Epidemic strains represented 78.8 % of intensive care unit isolates, causing more respiratory infections, while sporadic strains were more frequently isolated from wound and soft tissue infections. The study showed that among strains collected at the same time and from the same region, the very heterogeneous, sensitive sporadic strains, with the exception of a few non-susceptible singleton isolates, clearly differed from the highly resistant epidemic ones, which belonged to multiple pulsotypes and genotypes clustered into three worldwide clonal lineages carrying blaOXA-64, blaOXA-66 and blaOXA-69, respectively.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)582-590
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Medical Microbiology
Issue numberPART4
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2013

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • Microbiology (medical)


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