Genomic insights into evolution of pathogenicity and resistance of multidrug-resistant Raoultella ornithinolytica WM1

Ann N Y Acad Sci. 2021 Mar 30. doi: 10.1111/nyas.14595. Online ahead of print.


Raoultella ornithinolytica is a poorly understood opportunistic pathogen, and the underlying mechanisms of its multidrug resistance and pathogenicity have not yet been comprehensively investigated. The multidrug-resistant (MDR) strain WM1 was isolated from the blood of a male patient in Tianjin, China, in 2018. Here, we describe the complete genome and provide a genomic analysis of R. ornithinolytica WM1. The isolate was resistant to all tested antimicrobials except amikacin, tobramycin, and tigecycline. Two plasmids, pWM1-1 (IncHI5) and pWM1-2 (IncR), carried multidrug-resistance regions. A large antimicrobial resistance island region resided on pWM1-1 and exhibited mosaic structures resulting from the acquisition of complex integrations of variable regions, including genes conferring resistance to multiple classes of antimicrobials. Moreover, WM1 possessed virulence-related elements that encode several virulence factors, including type I fimbriae, Escherichia coli common pilus, type II and VI secretion systems, yersiniabactin, enterobactin, and surface polysaccharide, indicating pathogenic potential. Furthermore, the core genome phylogeny and pan-genome analyses revealed extensive genetic diversity. Our analysis indicates the need for stringent infection control, antimicrobial stewardship, periodic resistance monitoring, and rational medication to address potential threats posed by MDR R. ornithinolytica strains.

PMID:33786847 | DOI:10.1111/nyas.14595