First Identification of an IMI-1 Carbapenemase-producing Colistin-resistant Enterobacter Cloacae in China

Liang Huang; Xiaohui Wang; Yu Feng; Yi Xie; Liping Xie; Zhiyong Zong


Ann Clin Microbiol Antimicrob. 2015;14(51) 

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Background: Carbapenem resistance among the Enterobacteriaceae is a serious healthcare challenge. bla IMI is a carbapenemase gene mediating resistance to carbapenems but has not been commonly found. A bla IMI-carrying Enterobacter cloacae, which was also resistant to colistin, is reported here.

Findings: E. cloacae strain WCHECl-1060 was recovered from a blood sample of a leukemia patient, who was not previously exposed to colistin. Strain WCHECl-1060 belongs to a new sequence type, ST410, and was resistant to carbapenems and colistin but was susceptible to third-generation cephalosporins. A new allelic variant of bla IMI-1, which has two silent mutations compared to the original bla IMI-1 variant, was found in strain WCHECl-1060. Conjugation and transformation experiments failed to transfer bla IMI-1, suggesting a likely chromosome origin.

Conclusions: To our knowledge, this is the first report of an IMI-1 carbapenemase-producing colistin-resistant E. cloacae in China. Microbiological laboratories should be aware of the unusual carbapenem-resistant but third-generation cephalosporin-susceptible profiles of these IMI-producing isolates. The trend of colistin resistance among the Enterobacteriaceae should be also monitored.