To determine the distribution and relationship of antimicrobial resistance determinants among extended-spectrum-cephalosporin (ESC)-resistant or carbapenem-resistant Escherichia coli isolates from the aquatic environment in India, water samples were collected from rivers or sewage treatment plants in five Indian states. A total of 446 E. coli isolates were randomly obtained. Resistance to ESC and/or carbapenem was observed in 169 (37.9%) E. coli isolates, which were further analyzed. These isolates showed resistance to numerous antimicrobials; more than half of the isolates exhibited resistance to eight or more antimicrobials. The blaNDM gene was detected in 14/21 carbapenem-resistant E. coli isolates: blaNDM-1 in 2 isolates, blaNDM-5 in 7 isolates, and blaNDM-7 in 5 isolates. The blaCTX-M gene was detected in 112 isolates (66.3%): blaCTX-M-15 in 108 isolates and blaCTX-M-55 in 4 isolates. We extracted 49 plasmids from selected isolates, and their whole-genome sequences were determined. Fifty resistance genes were detected, and 11 different combinations of replicon types were observed among the 49 plasmids. The network analysis results suggested that the plasmids sharing replicon types tended to form a community, which is based on the predicted gene similarity among the plasmids. Four communities each containing from 4 to 17 plasmids were observed. Three of the four communities contained plasmids detected in different Indian states, suggesting that the interstate dissemination of ancestor plasmids has already occurred. Comparison of the DNA sequences of the blaNDM-positive plasmids detected in this study with known sequences of related plasmids suggested that various mutation events facilitated the evolution of the plasmids and that plasmids with similar genetic backgrounds have widely disseminated in India.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Pharmacology (medical)
- Infectious Diseases