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06.05.2020 | Original Article | Ausgabe 10/2020

European Journal of Clinical Microbiology & Infectious Diseases 10/2020

Nosocomial outbreak linked to a flexible gastrointestinal endoscope contaminated with an amikacin-resistant ST17 clone of Pseudomonas aeruginosa

European Journal of Clinical Microbiology & Infectious Diseases > Ausgabe 10/2020
Felipe Fernández-Cuenca, Lorena López-Cerero, Gabriel Cabot, Antonio Oliver, Julio López-Méndez, Esther Recacha, Inés Portillo, Jesús Rodríguez-Baño, Álvaro Pascual
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Endoscope contamination is infrequent but can be the source of nosocomial infections and outbreaks. In August 2016, an unexpected increase in the incidence of amikacin-resistant P. aeruginosa isolates (AK-Pae) was observed at a tertiary care center in the south of Spain. An epidemiological and microbiological investigation (August-October 2016) was performed to explain this finding. Isolates from clinical and environmental samples (2 endoscopes used for retrograde cholangiopancreatography; ERCP) were identified by MALDI-TOF. Antimicrobial susceptibility testing was performed using the MicroScan system. Whole-Genome-Sequencing (Miseq, Illumina) was performed to determine the resistome and virulome. Clonal relatedness among isolates was assessed by SpeI-PFGE and MLST. A Caenorhabditis elegans killing assay was performed for virulence testing. Biofilm formation was performed using a colorimetric assay. Four of the 5 patients infected and/or colonized with AK-Pae in August 2016 had undergone ERCP ≤5 days before sample collection. Two endoscopes were contaminated with AK-Pae. Isolates from one endoscope showed an identical PFGE pattern to 9 isolates (cluster I) and differed (1–2 bands) to 5 isolates (cluster II). Isolates from these clusters belonged to the ST17 clone. This S17 clone was characterized by its low virulence in the C. elegans killing assay, and its biofilm-forming ability, slightly superior to that of high-risk clones of P. aeruginosa ST175 and ST235. This outbreak was caused by an endoscope used for ERCP contaminated with an invasive, moderately virulent, biofilm-forming AK-Pae ST17 clone, suggesting the possible emergence of a new high-risk lineage of this clone.

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