Carbapenem resistance in Acinetobacter baumannii: the molecular epidemic features of an emerging problem in health care facilities

  • Raffaele Zarrilli Department of Preventive Medical Sciences, Hygiene Section, University of Naples Federico II, Naples
  • Maria Giannouli Department of Preventive Medical Sciences, Hygiene Section, University of Naples Federico II, Naples
  • Federica Tomasone Department of Preventive Medical Sciences, Hygiene Section, University of Naples Federico II, Naples
  • Maria Triassi Department of Preventive Medical Sciences, Hygiene Section, University of Naples Federico II, Naples
  • Athanassios Tsakris Department of Microbiology, Medical School, University of Athens, Athens

Abstract

Acinetobacter baumannii is an opportunistic gram-negative pathogen with increasing relevance in a variety of nosocomial infections especially among intensive-care-unit (ICU) patients. Carbapenems have been widely used to treat serious multidrug-resistant A. baumannii infections; however, incidences of carbapenem-resistant A. baumannii are rising in several parts of the world and large and sustained outbreaks caused by such bacteria have been described. Carbapenem-resistant A. baumannii epidemics are sustained by clusters of highly similar strains that successfully spread among different cities and countries; their resistance phenotype is mainly due to the acquisition of carbapenem-hydrolyzing class D β-lactamase (CHDL) genes flanked by insertion sequence (IS) elements. Multi-facility outbreaks can be also sustained by inter-hospital transfer of colonized patients. Here, we review the global epidemiology of carbapenem-resistant A. baumannii, with the emphasis on the molecular epidemiology and genetic characterization of carbapenem resistance in epidemic strains.
Published
2009-06-01
How to Cite
Zarrilli R, Giannouli M, Tomasone F, Triassi M, Tsakris A (2009) Carbapenem resistance in Acinetobacter baumannii: the molecular epidemic features of an emerging problem in health care facilities. The Journal Of Infection In Developing Countries 3 (05): 335-341. https://doi.org/10.3855/jidc.240
Section
Reviews

Keywords

Acinetobacter baumannii, nosocomial outbreaks, genotyping, carbapenemases