Adaptation of Stenotrophomonas maltophilia in cystic fibrosis: molecular diversity, mutation frequency and antibiotic resistance.
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AbstractDue to the continuous exposure to a challenging environment and repeated antibiotic treatment courses, bacterial populations in cystic fibrosis (CF) patients experience selective pressure causing the emergence of mutator phenotypes. In this study we investigated the genotypic diversity, mutation frequency and antibiotic resistance of S. maltophilia isolates chronically colonizing CF patients. S. maltophilia was isolated from a total of 90 sputum samples, collected sequentially from 19 CF patients admitted between January 2008 and March 2012 at the University Hospital Essen, Germany. DNA fingerprinting by repetitive-sequence-based PCR revealed that 68.4% (n=13) of CF patients harbored different S. maltophilia genotypes during the 4-year study course. Out of 90 S. maltophilia isolates obtained from chronically colonized CF patients, 17.8% (n=16) were hypomutators, 27.7% (n=25), normomutators, 23.3% (n=21), weak hypermutators and 31.2% (n=28) strong hypermutators. We also found that mutation rates of the most clonally related genotypes varied over time with the tendency to become less mutable. Mutator isolates were found to have no significant increase in resistance against eight different antibiotics versus nonmutators. Sequencing of the mismatch repair genes mutL, mutS and uvrD revealed alterations that resulted in amino acid changes in their corresponding proteins. Here, we could demonstrate that several different S. maltophilia genotypes are present in CF patients and as a sign of adaption their mutation status switches over time to a less mutator phenotype without increasing resistance. These results suggest that S. maltophilia attempts to sustain its biological fitness as mechanism for long-term persistence in the CF lung.
CitationAdaptation of Stenotrophomonas maltophilia in cystic fibrosis: molecular diversity, mutation frequency and antibiotic resistance. 2014, 304 (5-6):613-9 Int. J. Med. Microbiol.
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