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01.12.2017 | Research | Ausgabe 1/2017 Open Access

Antimicrobial Resistance & Infection Control 1/2017

Clonal diversity and detection of carbapenem resistance encoding genes among multidrug-resistant Acinetobacter baumannii isolates recovered from patients and environment in two intensive care units in a Moroccan hospital

Antimicrobial Resistance & Infection Control > Ausgabe 1/2017
Jean Uwingabiye, Abdelhay Lemnouer, Ignasi Roca, Tarek Alouane, Mohammed Frikh, Bouchra Belefquih, Fatna Bssaibis, Adil Maleb, Yassine Benlahlou, Jalal Kassouati, Nawfal Doghmi, Abdelouahed Bait, Charki Haimeur, Lhoussain Louzi, Azeddine Ibrahimi, Jordi Vila, Mostafa Elouennass
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Electronic supplementary material

The online version of this article (https://​doi.​org/​10.​1186/​s13756-017-0262-4) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.



Carbapenem-resistant Acinetobacter baumannii has recently been defined by the World Health Organization as a critical pathogen. The aim of this study was to compare clonal diversity and carbapenemase-encoding genes of A. baumannii isolates collected from colonized or infected patients and hospital environment in two intensive care units (ICUs) in Morocco.


The patient and environmental sampling was carried out in the medical and surgical ICUs of Mohammed V Military teaching hospital from March to August 2015. All A. baumannii isolates recovered from clinical and environmental samples, were identified using routine microbiological techniques and Matrix-Assisted Laser Desorption/Ionization Time-of-Flight Mass Spectrometry. Antimicrobial susceptibility testing was performed using disc diffusion method. The carbapenemase-encoding genes were screened for by PCR. Clonal relatedness was analyzed by digestion of the DNA with low frequency restriction enzymes and pulsed field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) and the multi locus sequence typing (MLST) was performed on two selected isolates from two major pulsotypes.


A total of 83 multidrug-resistant A. baumannii isolates were collected: 47 clinical isolates and 36 environmental isolates. All isolates were positive for the bla OXA51-like and bla OXA23-like genes. The coexistence of bla NDM-1 /bla OXA-23-like and bla OXA 24-like /bla OXA-23-like were detected in 27 (32.5%) and 2 (2.4%) of A. baumannii isolates, respectively. The environmental samples and the fecally-colonized patients were significantly identified (p < 0.05) as the most common sites of isolation of NDM-1-harboring isolates. PFGE grouped all isolates into 9 distinct clusters with two major groups (0007 and 0008) containing up to 59% of the isolates. The pulsotype 0008 corresponds to sequence type (ST) 195 while pulsotype 0007 corresponds to ST 1089.The genetic similarity between the clinical and environmental isolates was observed in 80/83 = 96.4% of all isolates, belonging to 7 pulsotypes.


This study shows that the clonal spread of environmental A. baumannii isolates is related to that of clinical isolates recovered from colonized or infected patients, being both associated with a high prevalence of the bla OXA23-like and bla NDM-1 genes. These findings emphasize the need for prioritizing the bio-cleaning of the hospital environment to control and prevent the dissemination of A. baumannii clonal lineages.
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