Genomic surveillance of Pseudomonas aeruginosa in the Philippines, 2013-2014
P. aeruginosa surveillance in the Philippines
Pseudomonas aeruginosa is an opportunistic pathogen often causing nosocomial infections that are resilient to treatment due to an extensive repertoire of intrinsic and acquired resistance mechanisms. In recent years, increasing resistance rates to antibiotics such as carbapenems and extended-spectrum cephalosporins have been reported, as well as multi-drug resistant and possible extremely drug-resistant rates of approximately 21% and 15%, respectively. However, the molecular epidemiology and AMR mechanisms of this pathogen remains largely uncharacterized.
We sequenced the whole genomes of 176 P. aeruginosaisolates collected in 2013-2014 by the Antimicrobial Resistance Surveillance Program. The multi-locus sequence type, presence of antimicrobial resistance (AMR) determinants, and relatedness between the isolates were derived from the sequence data. The concordance between phenotypic and genotypic resistance was also determined.
Carbapenem resistance was associated namely with loss-of function of the OprD porin, and acquisition of the metallo-?-lactamase VIM. The concordance between phenotypic and genotypic resistance was 93.27% overall for 6 antibiotics in 3 classes, but varied widely between aminoglycosides. The population of P. aeruginosain the Philippines was diverse, with clonal expansions of XDR genomes belonging to multi-locus sequence types ST235, ST244, ST309, and ST773. We found evidence of persistence or reintroduction of the predominant clone ST235 in one hospital, as well as transfer between hospitals. Most of the ST235 genomes formed a distinct Philippine lineage when contextualized with international genomes, thus raising the possibility that this is a lineage unique to the Philippines. This was further supported by long-read sequencing of one representative XDR isolate, which revealed the presence of an integron carrying multiple resistance genes, including blaVIM-2, with differences in gene composition and synteny to other P. aeruginosaclass 1 integrons described before.We produced the first comprehensive genomic survey of P. aeruginosain the Philippines, which bridges the gap in genomic data from the Western Pacific region and will constitute the genetic background to contextualize ongoing prospective surveillance. Our results also highlight the importance of infection control interventions aimed to curtail the spread of international epidemic clone ST235 within the country.
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