Treatment of Swine Dysentery (SD) caused by Brachyspira hyodysenteriae (B. hyodysenteriae) is carried out using antimicrobials such as macrolides, lincosamides and pleuromutilins leading to the selection of resistant strains. Whole genome sequencing of a multidrug-resistant B. hyodysenteriae strain called BH718 belonging to sequence type (ST) 83 revealed the presence of the lincosamide resistance gene lnu(C) on the small 1724-bp transposon MTnSag1. The strain also contains an A to T substitution at position 2058 (A2058T) in the 23S rRNA gene which is known to be associated with macrolide and lincosamide resistance in B. hyodysenteriae. Testing of additional strains showed that those containing lnu(C) exhibited a higher minimal inhibitory concentration (MIC) of lincomycin (MIC ≥ 64 mg/L) compared to strains lacking lnu(C), even if they also harbor the A2058T mutation. Resistance to pleuromutilins could not be explained by the presence of already reported mutations in the 23S rRNA gene and in the ribosomal protein L3. This study shows that B. hyodysenteriae has the ability to acquire mobile genetic elements conferring resistance to antibiotics.
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