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1.  Inoculum Effect with Cefazolin among Clinical Isolates of Methicillin-Susceptible Staphylococcus aureus: Frequency and Possible Cause of Cefazolin Treatment Failure▿  
Methicillin (meticillin)-susceptible Staphylococcus aureus (MSSA) strains producing large amounts of type A β-lactamase (Bla) have been associated with cefazolin failures, but the frequency and impact of these strains have not been well studied. Here we examined 98 MSSA clinical isolates and found that 26% produced type A Bla, 15% type B, 46% type C, and none type D and that 13% lacked blaZ. The cefazolin MIC90 was 2 μg/ml for a standard inoculum and 32 μg/ml for a high inoculum, with 19% of isolates displaying a pronounced inoculum effect (MICs of ≥16 μg/ml with 107 CFU/ml) (9 type A and 10 type C Bla producers). At the high inoculum, type A producers displayed higher cefazolin MICs than type B or C producers, while type B and C producers displayed higher cefamandole MICs. Among isolates from hemodialysis patients with MSSA bacteremia, three from the six patients who experienced cefazolin failure showed a cefazolin inoculum effect, while none from the six patients successfully treated with cefazolin showed an inoculum effect, suggesting an association between these strains and cefazolin failure (P = 0.09 by Fisher's exact test). In summary, 19% of MSSA clinical isolates showed a pronounced inoculum effect with cefazolin, a phenomenon that could explain the cases of cefazolin failure previously reported for hemodialysis patients with MSSA bacteremia. These results suggest that for serious MSSA infections, the presence of a significant inoculum effect with cefazolin could be associated with clinical failure in patients treated with this cephalosporin, particularly when it is used at low doses.
PMCID: PMC2715590  PMID: 19487449
2.  Activities of Ceftobiprole and Other Cephalosporins against Extracellular and Intracellular (THP-1 Macrophages and Keratinocytes) Forms of Methicillin-Susceptible and Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus aureus▿ †  
Staphylococcus aureus is an opportunistic intracellular organism. Although they poorly accumulate in eukaryotic cells, β-lactams show activity against intracellular methicillin (meticillin)-susceptible S. aureus (MSSA) if the exposure times and the drug concentrations are sufficient. Intraphagocytic methicillin-resistant S. aureus (MRSA) strains are susceptible to penicillins and carbapenems because the acidic pH favors the acylation of PBP 2a by these β-lactams through pH-induced conformational changes. The intracellular activity (THP-1 macrophages and keratinocytes) of ceftobiprole, which shows almost similar in vitro activities against MRSA and MSSA in broth, was examined against a panel of hospital-acquired and community-acquired MRSA strains (MICs, 0.5 to 2.0 mg/liter at pH 7.4 and 0.25 to 1.0 mg/liter at pH 5.5) and was compared with its activity against MSSA isolates. The key pharmacological descriptors {relative maximal efficacy (Emax), relative potency (the concentration causing a reduction of the inoculum halfway between E0 and Emax [EC50]), and static concentration (Cs)} were measured. All strains showed sigmoidal dose-responses, with Emax being about a 1 log10 CFU decrease from the postphagocytosis inoculum, and EC50 and Cs being 0.2 to 0.3× and 0.6 to 0.9× the MIC, respectively. Ceftobiprole effectively competed with Bocillin FL (a fluorescent derivative of penicillin V) for binding to PBP 2a at both pH 5.5 and pH 7.4. In contrast, cephalexin, cefuroxime, cefoxitin, or ceftriaxone (i) were less potent in PBP 2a competitive binding assays, (ii) showed only partial restoration of the activity against MRSA in broth at acidic pH, and (iii) were collectively less effective against MRSA in THP-1 macrophages and were ineffective in keratinocytes. The improved activity of ceftobiprole toward intracellular MRSA compared with the activities of conventional cephalosporins can be explained, at least in part, by its greater ability to bind to PBP 2a not only at neutral but also at acidic pH.
PMCID: PMC2687181  PMID: 19289525
3.  Time-Kill and Synergism Studies of Ceftobiprole against Enterococcus faecalis, Including β-Lactamase-Producing and Vancomycin-Resistant Isolates▿  
Ceftobiprole (BAL9141) is an investigational cephalosporin with broad in vitro activity against gram-positive cocci, including enterococci. Ceftobiprole MICs were determined for 93 isolates of Enterococcus faecalis (including 16 β-lactamase [Bla] producers and 17 vancomycin-resistant isolates) by an agar dilution method following the Clinical and Laboratory Standards Institute recommendations. Ceftobiprole MICs were also determined with a high inoculum concentration (107 CFU/ml) for a subset of five Bla producers belonging to different previously characterized clones by a broth dilution method. Time-kill and synergism studies (with either streptomycin or gentamicin) were performed with two β-lactamase-producing isolates (TX0630 and TX5070) and two vancomycin-resistant isolates (TX2484 [VanB] and TX2784 [VanA]). The MICs of ceftobiprole for 50 and 90% of the isolates tested were 0.25 and 1 μg/ml, respectively. All Bla producers and vancomycin-resistant isolates were inhibited by concentrations of ≤1 and ≤4 μg/ml, respectively, at the standard inoculum concentration. Ceftobiprole MICs at a high inoculum concentration for a subset of five Bla+ E. faecalis isolates were ≤1 μg/ml. Bactericidal activity was observed against four isolates tested at concentrations as low as 1 μg/ml regardless of the production of β-lactamase or vancomycin resistance. A combination of ceftobiprole (0.5 μg/ml) and streptomycin (25 μg/ml) was synergistic against Bla+ TX0630 and TX5070. Ceftobiprole (0.5 μg/ml) plus gentamicin (10 μg/ml) was synergistic against VanB isolate TX2484 and showed enhanced killing, but not synergism, against TX2784 (VanA), despite the absence of high-level resistance to gentamicin. In conclusion, ceftobiprole exhibited good in vitro activity against E. faecalis, including Bla+ and vancomycin-resistant strains, and exhibited synergism with aminoglycosides against selected isolates.
PMCID: PMC1891360  PMID: 17438057
4.  Activity of Ten Cephalosporins on Biomass of Methicillin-Susceptible and -Resistant Staphylococcus aureus 
The growth curves automatically recorded and printed during the action of 10 cephalosporins on methicillin-susceptible and methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus showed the following. (i) The biomass of methicillin-susceptible S. aureus exposed to the cephalosporins increased before lysis occurred (inoculum, 106 colony-forming units per ml). Lysis was more rapid with cephalothin and cephaloridine, whose minimal inhibitory concentrations were lowest. (ii) The same biomass increase followed by lysis occurred with methicillin-resistant S. aureus, and the speed of lysis was not different from those of cephalothin (without any regrowth), cefoxitin (with regrowth of a few strains), and cephaloridine (regrowth of all strains), with methicillin-susceptible strains. A 2-log increase of inoculum (108 colony-forming units per ml) did not modify significantly the speed of lysis with cephalothin, cephaloridine, and cefoxitin, but regrowth sometimes occurred. The early transitory lysis caused by cephaloridine, cephalothin, cefamandole, and cefoxitin was not suppressed by preincubation with 32 μg of methicillin per ml, but regrowth occurred more frequently. No lysis could be observed with cefazolin, cefotaxime, cephalexin, cephradine, cefuroxime, and cefaclor unless high concentrations were achieved. (iii) From a practical point of view, the early response of the growth curve (4 h) could not determine in every case whether a strain of S. aureus was resistant or susceptible to cephalosporin. A further study of the growth curve (18 of 24 h) was necessary for this purpose. Results obtained after a few hours with automated systems should be interpreted with great caution.
PMCID: PMC283887  PMID: 6901595
5.  Cefazolin high-inoculum effect in methicillin-susceptible Staphylococcus aureus from South American hospitals 
Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy  2013;68(12):2773-2778.
Clinical failures with cefazolin have been described in high-inoculum infections caused by methicillin-susceptible Staphylococcus aureus (MSSA) producing type A β-lactamase. We investigated the prevalence of the cefazolin inoculum effect (InE) in MSSA from South American hospitals, since cefazolin is used routinely against MSSA due to concerns about the in vivo efficacy of isoxazolyl penicillins.
MSSA isolates were recovered from bloodstream (n = 296) and osteomyelitis (n = 68) infections in two different multicentre surveillance studies performed in 2001–02 and 2006–08 in South American hospitals. We determined standard-inoculum (105cfu/mL) and high-inoculum (107 cfu/mL) cefazolin MICs. PFGE was performed on all isolates that exhibited a cefazolin InE. Multilocus sequence typing (MLST) and sequencing of part of blaZ were performed on representative isolates.
The overall prevalence of the cefazolin InE was 36% (131 isolates). A high proportion (50%) of MSSA isolates recovered from osteomyelitis infections exhibited the InE, whereas it was observed in 33% of MSSA recovered from bloodstream infections. Interestingly, Ecuador had the highest prevalence of the InE (45%). Strikingly, 63% of MSSA isolates recovered from osteomyelitis infections in Colombia exhibited the InE. MLST revealed that MSSA isolates exhibiting the InE belonged to diverse genetic backgrounds, including ST5, ST8, ST30 and ST45, which correlated with the prevalent methicillin-resistant S. aureus clones circulating in South America. Types A (66%) and C (31%) were the most prevalent β-lactamases.
Our results show a high prevalence of the cefazolin InE associated with type A β-lactamase in MSSA isolates from Colombia and Ecuador, suggesting that treatment of deep-seated infections with cefazolin in those countries may be compromised.
PMCID: PMC3820105  PMID: 23794599
inoculum effect; bloodstream infections; osteomyelitis
6.  In Vivo Effects of Cefazolin, Daptomycin, and Nafcillin in Experimental Endocarditis with a Methicillin-Susceptible Staphylococcus aureus Strain Showing an Inoculum Effect against Cefazolin 
Several reports have implicated the inoculum effect that some strains of type A beta-lactamase (Bla)-producing, methicillin-susceptible Staphylococcus aureus (MSSA) show against cefazolin as the cause for clinical failures in certain serious deep-seated infections. Here, using a previously reported MSSA strain displaying this phenotype (TX0117), we obtained a Bla-cured derivative (TX0117c) with a combination of novobiocin and high temperature. Both isolates were then used in a rat endocarditis model and treated with cefazolin, nafcillin, and daptomycin, given to simulate human dosing. Animals were treated for 3 days and either sacrificed at 24 h after the last antibiotic dose (standard group) or left untreated for an additional 3 days (relapse group). With TX0117 in the standard treatment group, daptomycin and nafcillin were both significantly better than cefazolin in reducing CFU/g of vegetations, achieving mean log10 reductions compared to levels in untreated rats of 7.1, 5.3, and 1.8, respectively (cefazolin versus daptomycin, P < 0.0001; cefazolin versus nafcillin, P = 0.005; daptomycin versus nafcillin, P = 0.053). In addition, cefazolin was significantly more effective in reducing vegetation titers of TX0117c than of TX0117 (mean log10 reduction of 1.4 versus 5.5, respectively; P = 0.0001). Similar results were observed with animals in the relapse group. Thus, these data show that there can be an in vivo consequence of the in vitro inoculum effect that some MSSA strains display against cefazolin and indicate a specific role for Bla production using a Bla-cured derivative strain against which cefazolin regained both in vitro and in vivo activity.
PMCID: PMC3754321  PMID: 23796934
7.  Effect of Inoculum and of Beta-Lactamase on the Anti-Staphylococcal Activity of Thirteen Penicillins and Cephalosporins 
Because there are few persuasive data for selecting one semisynthetic penicillin or cephalosporin over another for treatment of serious staphylococcal infections, 118 recent clinical isolates of Staphylococcus aureus were studied to determine to what extent the presence of β-lactamase affected the relative anti-staphylococcal activity of six penicillins and seven cephalosporins. In addition, the effect of inoculum was studied for its possible effect on the anti-staphylococcal activity of the 13 β-lactam antibiotics. By all criteria, methicillin and nafcillin were clearly more resistant to both the inoculum effect and the production of staphylococcal β-lactamase, whereas benzylpenicillin and cephaloridine (especially benzyl-penicillin) were the most susceptible to these effects. Cephazolin was clearly more susceptible to staphylococcal β-lactamase and heavy inocula than the other cephalosporins (with the exception of cephaloridine), whereas cephalothin was the most resistant cephalosporin to these factors. The minimal inhibitory concentration for benzylpenicillin for tests with undiluted inoculum, compared to results with inoculum diluted 10−4, differed by a factor up to 16,384, whereas with methicillin and nafcillin the differences were rarely more than twofold. Ratios for the other 10 antibiotics fell between these extremes. These results suggest that methicillin or nafcillin is most stable to staphylococcal β-lactamase, and that benzylpenicillin and cephaloridine are the most susceptible.
PMCID: PMC429316  PMID: 1167043
8.  Prevalence of blaZ Gene Types and the Inoculum Effect with Cefazolin among Bloodstream Isolates of Methicillin-Susceptible Staphylococcus aureus 
We sought to define the prevalence of blaZ gene types and the inoculum effect to cefazolin among methicillin-susceptible Staphylococcus aureus (MSSA) bloodstream infections. The blaZ gene was present in 142/185 (77%) isolates. A total of 50 (27%) isolates had a ≥4-fold increase in the cefazolin MIC from a standard to a high inoculum, and 8 (4%) demonstrated a nonsusceptible cefazolin MIC, all type A blaZ strains. The efficacy of cefazolin in the presence of the inoculum effect requires further study.
PMCID: PMC3421557  PMID: 22585225
9.  Phenotypic and Genetic Characterization of Carbapenemase and ESBLs Producing Gram-negative Bacteria (GNB) Isolated from Patients with Cystic Fibrosis (CF) in Tehran Hospitals 
Background: Cystic Fibrosis (CF) is an autosomal recessive genetic disorder in white populations caused by mutation in a gene that encodes Cystic Fibrosis Transmembrane Conductance Regulator (CFTR) protein. Since frequent respiratory tract infections are the major problem in patients with CF, obligation to identify the causative bacteria and determining their antibiotic resistance pattern is crucial. The purpose of this project was to detect Gram-negative bacteria (GNB) isolated from sputa of CF patients and to determine their antibiotic resistance pattern.
Materials and Methods: The sputum of 52 CF patients, treated as inpatients at hospitals in Tehran, was obtained between November 2011 and June 2012. Samples cultured in selective and non-selective media and GNB recognized by biochemical tests. Antimicrobial susceptibility testing to cephalosporins, aminoglycosides and carbapenems was performed by disk diffusion method and MICs of them were measured. For phenotypic detection of carbapenemase and ESBLs production, the Modified Hodge test, double disk synergy test and the combined disk methods were performed. Subsequently, the genes encoding the extended spectrum beta-lactamases (blaPER, blaCTX-M) and carbapenemases (blaIMP-1, blaGES, blaKPC, blaNDM, blaVIM-1, blaVIM-2, blaSPM, blaSIM) in Gram negative bacteria were targeted among the resistant isolates by using PCR. PFGE was used to determine any genetic relationship among the Pseudomonas aeruginosa isolated from these patients.
Results: Fifty five GNB were isolated from 52 sputum samples including Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Klebsiella ozaenae, Alcaligenes xylosoxidans, Achromobacter denitrificans, Klebsiella pneumonia and Stenotrophomonas maltophilia. The rates of resistance to different antibiotic were as follows: cefixime (%80), ceftriaxone (%43), ceftazidime (%45) and meropenem (%7). The prevalence of genes encoding the ESBLs and Carbapenemases among the the phenotypically positive strains were as follows: blaCTX-M (19), blaIMP-1 (2), blaVIM-1 (2) and blaVIM-2 (3) genes respectively. No other genes were detected. PFGE analysis revealed 8 genotypes. Six isolates had mutually 3 similar patterns.
Conclusion: This study showed the existence of important ESBLs and carbapenemases genes among the GNB isolated from patients with CF. Continuous surveillance of ESBLs and Carbapenemases, also identification of their types, in bacteria isolated from these patients have an important clinical impact, since, it can often provide valuable information for effective infection control measures and for the choice of appropriate antimicrobial therapy.
PMCID: PMC3939568  PMID: 24596716
Cystic fibrosis; Gram-negative Bacteria (GNB); Carbapenemase; Polymerase Chain Reaction
10.  Evidence for a purifying selection acting on the β-lactamase locus in epidemic clones of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus 
BMC Microbiology  2011;11:76.
The β-lactamase (bla) locus, which confers resistance to penicillins only, may control the transcription of mecA, the central element of methicillin resistance, which is embedded in a polymorphic heterelogous chromosomal cassette (the SCCmec element). In order to assess the eventual correlation between bla allotypes and genetic lineages, SCCmec types and/or β-lactam resistance phenotypes, the allelic variation on the bla locus was evaluated in a representative collection of 54 international epidemic methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) clinical strains and, for comparative purposes, also in 24 diverse methicillin-susceptible S. aureus (MSSA) strains.
Internal fragments of blaZ (the β-lactamase structural gene) were sequenced for all strains. A subset of strains, representative of blaZ allotypes, was further characterized by sequencing of internal fragments of the blaZ transcriptional regulators, blaI and blaR1. Thirteen allotypes for blaZ, nine for blaI and 12 for blaR1 were found. In a total of 121 unique single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNP) detected, no frameshift mutations were identified and only one nonsense mutation within blaZ was found in a MRSA strain. On average, blaZ alleles were more polymorphic among MSSA than in MRSA (14.7 vs 11.4 SNP/allele). Overall, blaR1 was the most polymorphic gene with an average of 24.8 SNP/allele. No correlation could be established between bla allotypes and genetic lineages, SCCmec types and/or β-lactam resistance phenotypes. In order to estimate the selection pressure acting on the bla locus, the average dN/dS values were computed. In the three genes and in both collections dN/dS ratios were significantly below 1.
The data strongly suggests the existence of a purifying selection to maintain the bla locus fully functional even on MRSA strains. Although, this is in agreement with the notion that in most clinical MRSA strains mecA gene is under the control of the bla regulatory genes, these findings also suggest that the apparently redundant function of blaZ gene for the MRSA resistant phenotype is still important for these strains. In addition, the data shows that the sensor-inducer blaR1 is the primary target for the accumulation of mutations in the bla locus, presumably to modulate the response to the presence of β-lactam antibiotic.
PMCID: PMC3102608  PMID: 21496235
β-lactamase; β-lactam resistance; allelic variation; MSSA; MRSA; mecA stabilization
11.  Characterization of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, vancomycin-resistant enterococci and extended-spectrum beta-lactamase-producing Escherichia coli in intensive care units in Canada: Results of the Canadian National Intensive Care Unit (CAN-ICU) study (2005–2006) 
Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), extended-spectrum beta-lactamase (ESBL)-producing Escherichia coli and vancomycin-resistant enterococci (VRE) are important hospital pathogens in Canada and worldwide.
To genotypically and phenotypically characterize the isolates of MRSA, VRE and ESBL-producing E coli collected from patients in Canadian intensive care units (ICUs) in 2005 and 2006.
Between September 1, 2005, and June 30, 2006, 19 medical centres participating in the Canadian National Intensive Care Unit (CAN-ICU) study collected 4133 unique patient isolates associated with infections in ICUs. Isolates of MRSA underwent mecA polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and Panton-Valentine leukocidin analysis; they were typed using pulsed-field gel electrophoresis. All isolates of E coli with ceftriaxone minimum inhibitory concentrations greater than or equal to 1 μg/mL were tested for the presence of an ESBL using the Clinical Laboratory Standards Institute double-disk diffusion method. Subsequently, PCR and sequence analysis were used to identify blaSHV, blaTEM and blaCTX-M. Isolates of VRE were tested for the presence of vanA and vanB genes by PCR.
Of the 4133 ICU isolates collected, MRSA accounted for 4.7% (193 of 4133) of all isolates. MRSA represented 21.9% (193 of 880) of all S aureus collected during the study; 90.7% were health care-associated MRSA strains and 9.3% were community-associated MRSA strains. Resistance rates for the isolates of MRSA were 91.8% to levofloxacin, 89.9% to clarithromycin, 76.1% to clindamycin and 11.7% to trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole; no isolates were resistant to vancomycin, linezolid, tigecycline or daptomycin. ESBL-producing E coli accounted for 0.4% (18 of 4133) of all isolates and 3.7% (18 of 493) of E coli isolates. All 18 ESBL-producing E coli were PCR-positive for CTX-M, with blaCTX-M-15 occurring in 72% (13 of 18) of isolates. All ESBL-producing E coli displayed a multidrug-resistant phenotype (resistant to third-generation cephalosporins and one or more other classes of antimicrobials), with 77.8% of isolates resistant to ciprofloxacin, 55.6% resistant to trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole, 27.8% resistant to gentamicin and 26.3% resistant to doxycycline; all isolates were susceptible to ertapenem, meropenem and tigecycline. VRE accounted for 0.4% (17 of 4133) of all isolates and 6.7% (17 of 255) of enterococci isolates; 88.2% of VRE had the vanA genotype. Isolated VRE that were tested were uniformly susceptible to linezolid, tigecycline and daptomycin.
MRSA isolated in Canadian ICUs in 2005 and 2006 was predominately health care-associated (90.7%), ESBL-producing E coli were all CTX-M producers (72% blaCTX-M-15) and VRE primarily harboured a vanA genotype (88.2%). MRSA, ESBL-producing E coli and VRE were frequently multidrug resistant.
PMCID: PMC2605872  PMID: 19412382
CAN-ICU; ESBL E coli; Intensive care; MRSA; Resistance; VRE
12.  Relative Inactivation by Staphylococcus aureus of Eight Cephalosporin Antibiotics 
These studies extend the recent observation that cefazolin is inactivated to a greater extent than cephaloridine by some strains of penicillinase-producing Staphylococcus aureus, whereas cephalothin undergoes little if any inactivation. In Mueller-Hinton broth (inoculum, 3 × 106) 100 recently isolated strains had minimal inhibitory concentrations (MICs) ≤ 2 μg/ml for cephalothin and cephaloridine, whereas in Trypticase soy broth (TSB) 50% had MICs > 2 μg/ml and 10% (designated “resistant” strains) were >8 μg/ml for cephaloridine but remained ≤2 μg/ml for cephalothin. A large inoculum (3 × 107) of strains with high MICs in TSB almost completely inactivated 50 μg of cefazolin per ml in 6 h, with progressively less inactivation, in the following order, of cephaloridine, cephalexin, cephradine, cephapirin, and cefamandole; cefoxitin and cephalothin underwent little if any inactivation. The greater inactivation in TSB than in Mueller-Hinton broth appeared to be due to a greater production of β-lactamases by each colony-forming unit, since the inoculum size in the two broths was not significantly different. In contrast, “susceptible” strains (MICs ≤ 2 μg/ml in both broths) inactivated cephaloridine more than cefazolin, and equal amounts of powdered bacterial extracts confirmed the fact that qualitatively different β-lactamases were produced by the susceptible and resistant strains. Disk diffusion tests were unreliable in separating the two groups of staphylococci. The clinical significance of inactivation by strains with high MICs is not known but, unless susceptibility can be clearly established, cephalothin appears preferable for severe staphylococcal infections, since it undergoes little if any inactivation by any strains of staphylococci.
PMCID: PMC429654  PMID: 938023
13.  Use of a Heavy Inoculum in the In Vitro Evaluation of the Anti-Staphylococcal Activity of 19 Cephalosporins 
The in vitro activity of 19 cephalosporins against 105 clinical isolates of Staphylococcus aureus and S. epidermidis was determined by using a heavy inoculum, i.e., 108 to 109 organisms per ml, to maximally challenge the antibiotics. The anti-staphylococcal activities of cephaloridine and 87/312 were consistently decreased by the use of a heavy inoculum when compared with the activity obtained with two less-concentrated inocula. The activity of most of the other compounds was also decreased with the use of a heavy inoculum, but this was observed only with selected isolates. Cephapirin, cephalothin, and cefazaflur were the most active drugs against the methicillin-susceptible isolates. Cephaloridine, cefamandole, cefazaflur, and 87/312 had substantial activity against methicillin-resistant staphylococci even with heavy inocula. With the exception of cefaclor against S. aureus, the orally absorbed cephalosporins were generally one-half to one-sixteenth as active as the parenterally administered cephalosporins. The median minimal inhibitory concentrations of five of the 12 parenteral cephalosporins were lower with the methicillin-susceptible S. aureus than with the methicillin-susceptible S. epidermidis strains.
PMCID: PMC352308  PMID: 352261
14.  In vitro activity of an orally administered cephalosporin, LY164846, against potentially pathogenic respiratory and dermal bacterial isolates. 
The antibacterial activity of LY164846, a new orally administered semisynthetic cephalosporin, was compared with that of amoxicillin-clavulanic acid against 492 potentially pathogenic respiratory tract and dermal isolates. Against groups A, B, and G streptococci; pneumococci; staphylococci (other than methicillin resistant); Haemophilus influenzae; Branhamella catarrhalis; and meningococci, the MICs for 90% of strains tested of LY164846 and amoxicillin-clavulanic acid were less than or equal to 4 and less than or equal to 1 microgram/ml, respectively. LY164846 was equally active against beta-lactamase-positive and -negative strains of Haemophilus and Staphylococcus. MBC to MIC ratios of LY164846 versus H. influenzae were less than or equal to 2, while those with Staphylococcus aureus were more difficult to determine because of skipped tubes or paradoxic effects. There were minimal inoculum, pH, or serum effects on LY164846 activity against H. influenzae and S. aureus. In time-kill studies, LY164846 and amoxicillin-clavulanic acid at double MICs were 99.9 to 100% bactericidal to H. influenzae in 24 h; two times the MIC of LY164846 and four times the MIC of cephalexin were 99.9 to 100% bactericidal to S. aureus in 24 h. Based on error-rate-bounded analysis, the following interpretative guidelines for 30-micrograms LY164846 disk diffusion test diameters are suggested: greater than or equal to 19 mm, susceptible (MIC, less than or equal to 4 micrograms/ml); 16 to 18 mm, intermediate (MIC, greater than 4 but less than or equal to 8 micrograms/ml); less than or equal to 15 mm, resistant (MIC, greater than 8 micrograms/ml).
PMCID: PMC180441  PMID: 3486628
15.  In vitro activity of SCE-2787, a new cephalosporin with potent activity against Pseudomonas aeruginosa and members of the family Enterobacteriaceae. 
Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy  1994;38(12):2896-2901.
The in vitro activity of SCE-2787, 7-[(Z)-2-(5-amino-1,2,4-thiadiazol-3- yl)-2-methoxyiminoacetamido]-3-(1-imidazo[1,2-b]pyridazinium)methy l-3- cephem-4-carboxylate, was compared with those of ceftazidime, ceftriaxone, and imipenem against recent clinical isolates. SCE-2787 inhibited 50% of tested isolates of the family Enterobacteriaceae at < or = 0.25 micrograms/ml. SCE-2787 was equally active as or more active than ceftazidime and ceftriaxone against members of the Enterobacteriaceae, with the exception of Proteus vulgaris. The MIC of SCE-2787 at which 90% of the isolates of Pseudomonas aeruginosa were inhibited was 2 micrograms/ml, two- to fourfold lower than those of imipenem and ceftazidime, respectively. SCE-2787, like ceftazidime and imipenem, did not inhibit the majority of strains of Pseudomonas cepacia and Xanthomonas maltophilia. SCE-2787 inhibited beta-hemolytic streptococci at < or = 0.12 micrograms/ml, but it did not inhibit Enterococcus faecalis, Listeria monocytogenes, or the anaerobic species tested. Methicillin-resistant staphylococci required SCE-2787 MICs of > or = 16 micrograms/ml, whereas methicillin-susceptible staphylococci were inhibited by 2 micrograms/ml. No difference between the MICs and MBCs was noted, except for P. aeruginosa, for which there was a fourfold difference. SCE-2787 was active over a pH range of 6 to 8. The inoculum size of 10(5) to 10(7) CFU caused only a twofold change in the MIC for Escherichia coli and Staphylococcus aureus but a 4- to 16-fold change in Enterobacter cloacae and P. aeruginosa. beta-Lactamases from Bush groups 1, 2a, and 2b did not hydrolyze SCE-2787. There was significant hydrolysis of SCE-2787 by the beta-lactamases designated 2b', i.e., TEM-3, TEM-5, TEM-7, and TEM-9, and by the group 2d beta-lactamases. SCE-2787 had poor affinity for group 1 and group 2b enzymes and constitutively produced chromosomal beta-lactamases such as P-99 of Enterobacter cloacae and plasmid-mediated TEM-1 of E. coli. SCE-2787 has in vitro activity comparable to that of current parenteral cephalosporin and is more active against P. aeruginosa and S. aureus.
PMCID: PMC188303  PMID: 7695279
16.  Characterization and Sequence Analysis of Extended-Spectrum-β-Lactamase-Encoding Genes from Escherichia coli, Klebsiella pneumoniae, and Proteus mirabilis Isolates Collected during Tigecycline Phase 3 Clinical Trials▿  
In concert with the development of novel β-lactams and broad-spectrum cephalosporins, bacterially encoded β-lactamases have evolved to accommodate the new agents. This study was designed to identify, at the sequence level, the genes responsible for the extended-spectrum-β-lactamase (ESBL) phenotypes of Escherichia coli, Klebsiella pneumoniae, and Proteus mirabilis isolates collected during the global tigecycline phase 3 clinical trials. PCR assays were developed to identify and clone the blaTEM, blaSHV, blaOXA, and blaCTX genes from clinical strains. Isolates were also screened for AmpC genes of the blaCMY, blaACT, blaFOX, and blaDHA families as well as the blaKPC genes encoding class A carbapenemases. E. coli, K. pneumoniae, and P. mirabilis isolates with ceftazidime MICs of ≥2 μg/ml were designated possible ESBL-producing pathogens and were then subjected to a confirmatory test for ESBLs by use of Etest. Of 272 unique patient isolates, 239 were confirmed by PCR and sequencing to carry the genes for at least one ESBL, with 44% of the positive isolates harboring the genes for multiple ESBLs. In agreement with current trends for ESBL distribution, blaCTX-M-type β-lactamase genes were found in 83% and 71% of the ESBL-positive E. coli and K. pneumoniae isolates, respectively, whereas blaSHV genes were found in 41% and 28% of the ESBL-positive K. pneumoniae and E. coli isolates, respectively. Ninety-seven percent of the E. coli and K. pneumoniae isolates were tigecycline susceptible (MIC90 = 2 μg/ml), warranting further studies to define the therapeutic utility of tigecycline against strains producing ESBLs in a clinical setting.
PMCID: PMC2630642  PMID: 19015360
17.  Cefotetan, a new cephamycin: comparison of in vitro antimicrobial activity with other cephems, beta-lactamase stability, and preliminary recommendations for disk diffusion testing. 
Cefotetan is a new, potent, 7 alpha-methoxy cephalosporin (cephamycin). The in vitro activity of cefotetan tested in a multiphasic, collaborative study against 12,260 consecutive clinical isolates and 448 selected isolates showed 93% of Enterobacteriaceae, 90% of methicillin-susceptible Staphylococcus aureus (broth dilution), 83% of Bacteroides fragilis, and 72% of non-enterococcal streptococci to be inhibited by less than or equal to 8 micrograms/ml. Beta-Lactamase-producing and -nonproducing Haemophilus influenzae strains were inhibited by less than or equal to 1.0 micrograms/ml. Cefotetan's inhibitory spectrum paralleled those of the newest generation of cephems and exceeded those of cefoxitin and cefamandole. No useful activity was present against Streptococcus faecalis or Pseudomonas aeruginosa. Cefotetan was bactericidal without significant inoculum effect and was highly resistant to hydrolysis by Richmond-Sykes types I, III, and IV beta-lactamases. Hydrolysis of the chromogenic cephalosporin PADAC (pyridine-2-azo-p-dimethylaniline cephalosporin) by type I beta-lactamases was markedly inhibited by concentrations of cefotetan similar to those of the potent inhibitor dicloxacillin. Analysis of agar disk diffusion for several disk potencies and broth dilution susceptibility tests by regression and error rate-bounding methods produced preliminary tentative zone standards (30-micrograms disk, using minimal inhibitory concentration breakpoints of less than or equal to 8 micrograms/ml susceptible and greater than 32 micrograms/ml resistant, or 75-micrograms disk, using minimal inhibitory concentration breakpoints of less than or equal to 16 micrograms/ml susceptible and greater than or equal to 64 micrograms/ml resistant) of greater than or equal to 18 mm susceptible, less than or equal to 14 mm resistant, and 15 to 17 mm indeterminate. Staphylococcus aureus testing with the 30-micrograms disk is not recommended.
PMCID: PMC185673  PMID: 6983862
18.  Analysis of Vancomycin Population Susceptibility Profiles, Killing Activity, and Postantibiotic Effect against Vancomycin-Intermediate Staphylococcus aureus 
Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus strains with decreased vancomycin susceptibility have been isolated from patients in the United States and Japan. The impact of decreased vancomycin susceptibility on the drug’s pharmacodynamic parameters has not been addressed. We studied the activity of vancomycin against three clinical strains of vancomycin intermediate-susceptible Staphylococcus aureus (VISA) under high- and low-inoculum conditions, with stationary- and logarithmic-growth-phase kill curves, and in postantibiotic effect (PAE) experiments. We also investigated the stability of the decreased vancomycin susceptibility by using population susceptibility profiles. The respective vancomycin microdilution MICs and MBCs for VISA strains HIP5836, 14379, and Mu50 were 8 and 8, 8 and 8, and 8 and 16 μg/ml. HIP5836 had the most homogeneous elevation of vancomycin MICs, because the MIC for nearly all bacteria in the inoculum was 8 μg/ml. The population MICs (defined as the lowest vancomycin concentration inhibiting 99.9% of growth) for the first serial passages of HIP5836, Mu50, and 14379 were 8, 4, and 2 μg/ml, respectively. After 10 passages, they decreased to 4, 2, and 1 μg/ml, respectively. The Mu50 population MIC increased to 12 μg/ml after five serial passages on vancomycin agar. In the low- and high-inoculum kill curves, time to 99.9% killing was significantly (P < 0.05) longer for both Mu50 and HIP5836 than that for 14379 and a control strain. However, colony counts at 24 h were similar to those of the vancomycin-sensitive strain for all VISA strains. The PAE (at 4× MIC) ranged from 1.3 h for 14379 to 2.0 h for HIP5836 and was similar to or greater than the PAE against the vancomycin-sensitive strain. In conclusion, we found that the decreased vancomycin susceptibility increased during persistent exposures to the drug and decreased upon removal of the selective pressure. The decreased vancomycin susceptibility decreased the rate of vancomycin killing, but did not affect the extent of killing or the PAE.
PMCID: PMC89390  PMID: 10428912
19.  Low level ß-lactamase production in methicillin-resistant staphylococcus aureus strains with ß-lactam antibiotics-induced vancomycin resistance 
BMC Microbiology  2012;12:69.
A class of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) shows resistance to vancomycin only in the presence of ß-lactam antibiotics (BIVR). This type of vancomycin resistance is mainly attributable to the rapid depletion of free vancomycin in the presence of ß-lactam antibiotics. This means that ß-lactam antibiotics remain active or intact in BIVR culture, although most MRSA cells are assumed to produce ß-lactamase. We hypothesised that the BIVR cells either did not harbour the ß-lactamase gene, blaZ, or the gene was quiescent. We tested this hypothesis by determining ß-lactamase activity and conducting PCR amplification of blaZ.
Five randomly selected laboratory stock BIVR strains showed an undetectable level of ß-lactamase activity and were blaZ-negative. Five non-BIVR stock strains showed an average ß-lactamase activity of 2.59 ± 0.35 U. To test freshly isolated MRSA, 353 clinical isolates were collected from 11 regionally distant hospitals. Among 25 BIVR strains, only 16% and 8% were blaZ positive and ß-lactamase-positive, respectively. In contrast, 95% and 61% of 328 non-BIVR strains had the blaZ gene and produced active ß-lactamase, respectively. To know the mechanism of low ß-lactamase activity in the BIVR cells, they were transformed with the plasmid carrying the blaZ gene. The transformants still showed a low level of ß-lactamase activity that was several orders of magnitude lower than that of blaZ-positive non-BIVR cells. Presence of the ß-lactamase gene in the transformants was tested by PCR amplification of blaZ using 11 pairs of primers covering the entire blaZ sequence. Yield of the PCR products was consistently low compared with that using blaZ-positive non-BIVR cells. Nucleotide sequencing of blaZ in one of the BIVR transformants revealed 10 amino acid substitutions. Thus, it is likely that the ß-lactamase gene was modified in the BIVR cells to downregulate active ß-lactamase production.
We concluded that BIVR cells gain vancomycin resistance by the elimination or inactivation of ß-lactamase production, thereby preserving ß-lactam antibiotics in milieu, stimulating peptidoglycan metabolism, and depleting free vancomycin to a level below the minimum inhibitory concentration of vancomycin.
PMCID: PMC3424166  PMID: 22568976
Antibiotic resistance; ß-lactam; Vancomycin; Staphylococcus aureus; ß-lactamase; MRSA
20.  In Vitro Activity of Ceftaroline against Gram-Positive and Gram-Negative Pathogens Isolated from Patients in Canadian Hospitals in 2009▿ 
The in vitro activities of ceftaroline and comparative agents were determined for a collection of the most frequently isolated bacterial pathogens from hospital-associated patients across Canada in 2009 as part of the ongoing CANWARD surveillance study. In total, 4,546 isolates from 15 sentinel Canadian hospital laboratories were tested using the Clinical and Laboratory Standards Institute (CLSI) broth microdilution method. Compared with other cephalosporins, including ceftobiprole, cefepime, and ceftriaxone, ceftaroline exhibited the greatest potency against methicillin-susceptible Staphylococcus aureus (MSSA), with a MIC90 of 0.25 μg/ml. Ceftaroline also demonstrated greater potency than ceftobiprole against community-associated methicillin-resistant S. aureus (MRSA) (MIC90, 0.5 μg/ml) and health care-associated MRSA (MIC90, 1 μg/ml) and was at least 4-fold more active than other cephalosporins against Staphylococcus epidermidis; all isolates of MSSA and MRSA tested were susceptible to ceftaroline (MIC, ≤1 μg/ml). Against streptococci, including Streptococcus pneumoniae, ceftaroline MICs (MIC90, ≤0.03 μg/ml) were comparable to those of ceftobiprole; however, against penicillin-nonsusceptible, macrolide-nonsusceptible, and multidrug-nonsusceptible isolates of S. pneumoniae, ceftaroline demonstrated 2- to 4-fold and 4- to 16-fold more potent activities than those of ceftobiprole and ceftriaxone, respectively. All isolates of S. pneumoniae tested were susceptible to ceftaroline (MIC, ≤0.25 μg/ml). Among Gram-negative isolates, ceftaroline demonstrated potent activity (MIC90, ≤0.5 μg/ml) against Escherichia coli (92.2% of isolates were susceptible), Klebsiella pneumoniae (94.1% of isolates were susceptible), Proteus mirabilis (97.7% of isolates were susceptible), and Haemophilus influenzae (100% of isolates were susceptible). Ceftaroline demonstrated less potent activity (MIC90, ≥4 μg/ml) against Enterobacter spp., Acinetobacter baumannii, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Klebsiella oxytoca, Serratia marcescens, and Stenotrophomonas maltophilia. Overall, ceftaroline demonstrated potent in vitro activity against a recent collection of the most frequently encountered Gram-positive and Gram-negative isolates from patients attending hospitals across Canada in 2009.
PMCID: PMC3101400  PMID: 21402844
21.  Increasing prevalence and dissemination of NDM-1 metallo-β-lactamase in India: data from the SMART study (2009) 
To investigate the β-lactamase background of ertapenem non-susceptible isolates for the presence of the most commonly detected carbapenemase genes, blaKPC, blaOXA-48 and blaVIM, and the newly described blaNDM-1.
Two hundred and thirty-five ertapenem-non-susceptible (MIC ≥0.5 mg/L) isolates of Enterobacteriaceae from the worldwide Study for Monitoring Antimicrobial Resistance Trends (SMART) 2009 programme were screened using a multiplex PCR for the presence of blaKPC, blaOXA-48, blaVIM and blaNDM-1 genes. Extended-spectrum β-lactamase (ESBL) and AmpC genes (blaESBL and blaAmpC) were identified using the Check-MDR CT101 microarray. DNA sequencing was performed to identify the blaESBL, blaKPC and blaNDM-1 genes. Molecular typing was also performed to genetically characterize these isolates.
Sixty-six isolates (28%) had a carbapenemase gene, with blaNDM-1 identified in 33 isolates including 2 isolates carrying both blaNDM-1 and blaOXA-48; other carbapenemase genes found included blaKPC (n = 23), blaVIM (n = 7) and blaOXA-48 (n = 3). All blaNDM-1-carrying isolates were from patients in India and comprised five different species. With the exception of one isolate carrying only blaNDM-1, all blaNDM-1 carbapenemase-possessing isolates carried additional β-lactamases in various combinations: blaESBL and blaAmpC (n = 18); blaESBL (n = 10); blaESBL, blaAmpC and blaOXA-48 (n = 2); and blaAmpC (n = 2). Except for blaOXA-48-carrying isolates, novel multilocus sequence types or enterobacterial repetitive intergenic consensus PCR patterns were observed along with clonal dissemination within and among sites.
A range of carbapenemase genes, associated with diverse ESBLs and/or AmpC backgrounds, were found among Enterobacteriaceae isolated during the study. Many of these ertapenem non-susceptible strains were clonally related and carried various combinations of β-lactamases.
PMCID: PMC3153502  PMID: 21676902
carbapenemases; Enterobacteriaceae; microarray analysis
22.  Effect of MexXY Overexpression on Ceftobiprole Susceptibility in Pseudomonas aeruginosa▿  
Ceftobiprole, an anti-methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus broad-spectrum cephalosporin, has activity (MIC for 50% of strains tested, ≤4 μg/ml) against many Pseudomonas aeruginosa strains. A common mechanism of P. aeruginosa resistance to β-lactams, including cefepime and ceftazidime, is efflux via increased expression of Mex pumps, especially MexAB. MexXY has differential substrate specificity, recognizing cefepime but not ceftazidime. In ceftobiprole clinical studies, paired isolates of P. aeruginosa from four subjects demonstrated ceftobiprole MICs of 2 to 4 μg/ml at baseline but 16 μg/ml posttreatment, unrelated to β-lactamase levels. Within each pair, the level of mexXY RNA, but not mexAB, mexCD, and mexEF, increased by an average of 50-fold from baseline to posttreatment isolates. Sequencing of the negative regulatory gene mexZ indicated that each posttreatment isolate contained a mutation not present at baseline. mexXY expression as a primary ceftobiprole and cefepime resistance mechanism was further examined in isogenic pairs by using cloned mexXY and mexZ. Expression of cloned mexXY in strain PAO1 or in a baseline isolate increased the ceftobiprole MIC to that for the posttreatment isolate. In contrast, in posttreatment isolates, lowering mexXY expression via introduction of cloned mexZ decreased the ceftobiprole MIC to that for the baseline isolates. Similar changes were observed for cefepime. A spontaneous mutant selectively overexpressing mexXY displayed a fourfold elevation in its ceftobiprole MIC, while overexpression of mexAB, -CD, and -EF had a minimal effect. These data indicate that ceftobiprole, like cefepime, is an atypical β-lactam that is a substrate for the MexXY efflux pump in P. aeruginosa.
PMCID: PMC2704694  PMID: 19433554
23.  Antipneumococcal Activity of Ceftobiprole, a Novel Broad-Spectrum Cephalosporin 
Ceftobiprole (previously known as BAL9141), an anti-methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus cephalosporin, was very highly active against a panel of 299 drug-susceptible and -resistant pneumococci, with MIC50 and MIC90 values (μg/ml) of 0.016 and 0.016 (penicillin susceptible), 0.06 and 0.5 (penicillin intermediate), and 0.5 and 1.0 (penicillin resistant). Ceftobiprole, imipenem, and ertapenem had lower MICs against all pneumococcal strains than amoxicillin, cefepime, ceftriaxone, cefotaxime, cefuroxime, or cefdinir. Macrolide and penicillin G MICs generally varied in parallel, whereas fluoroquinolone MICs did not correlate with penicillin or macrolide susceptibility or resistance. All strains were susceptible to linezolid, quinupristin-dalfopristin, daptomycin, vancomycin, and teicoplanin. Time-kill analyses showed that at 1× and 2× the MIC, ceftobiprole was bactericidal against 10/12 and 11/12 strains, respectively. Levofloxacin, moxifloxacin, vancomycin, and teicoplanin were each bactericidal against 10 to 12 strains at 2× the MIC. Azithromycin and clarithromycin were slowly bactericidal, and telithromycin was bactericidal against only 5/12 strains at 2× the MIC. Linezolid was mainly bacteriostatic, whereas quinupristin-dalfopristin and daptomycin showed marked killing at early time periods. Prolonged serial passage in the presence of subinhibitory concentrations of ceftobiprole failed to yield mutants with high MICs towards this cephalosporin, and single-passage selection showed very low frequencies of spontaneous mutants with breakthrough MICs towards ceftobiprole.
PMCID: PMC1087675  PMID: 15855516
24.  In Vivo Activity of Ceftobiprole in Murine Skin Infections Due to Staphylococcus aureus and Pseudomonas aeruginosa▿  
Ceftobiprole, a broad-spectrum cephalosporin with activity against methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) (P. Hebeisen et al., Antimicrob. Agents Chemother. 45:825-836, 2001), was evaluated in a subcutaneous skin infection model with Staphylococcus aureus Smith OC 4172 (methicillin-susceptible S. aureus [MSSA]), S. aureus OC 8525 (MRSA), Pseudomonas aeruginosa OC 4351 (having an inducible AmpC β-lactamase), and P. aeruginosa OC 4354 (overproducing AmpC β-lactamase). In the MSSA and MRSA infection models, ceftobiprole, administered as the prodrug ceftobiprole medocaril, was more effective in reducing CFU/g skin (P < 0.001) than were cefazolin, vancomycin, or linezolid based on the dose-response profiles. Skin lesion volumes in MSSA-infected animals treated with ceftobiprole were 19 to 29% lower than those for cefazolin-, vancomycin-, or linezolid-treated animals (P < 0.001). In MRSA infections, lesion size in ceftobiprole-treated mice was 34% less than that with cefazolin or linezolid treatment (P < 0.001). Against P. aeruginosa, ceftobiprole at similar doses was as effective as meropenem-cilastatin in reductions of CFU/g skin, despite 8- and 32-fold-lower MICs for meropenem; both treatments were more effective than was cefepime (P < 0.001) against the inducible and overproducing AmpC β-lactamase strains of P. aeruginosa. Ceftobiprole was similar to meropenem-cilastatin and 47 to 54% more effective than cefepime (P < 0.01) in reducing the size of the lesion caused by either strain of P. aeruginosa in this study. These studies indicate that ceftobiprole is effective in reducing both bacterial load and lesion volume associated with infections due to MSSA, MRSA, and P. aeruginosa in this murine model of skin and soft tissue infection.
PMCID: PMC2798551  PMID: 19884364
25.  Comparison of the inoculum effects of members of the family Enterobacteriaceae on cefoxitin and other cephalosporins, beta-lactamase inhibitor combinations, and the penicillin-derived components of these combinations. 
We compared the inoculum effects of 105 recent clinical isolates of the family Enterobacteriaceae on cefoxitin, other cephalosporins, aztreonam, and three beta-lactamase inhibitors (clavulanic acid, sulbactam, and tazobactam) and their penicillin-derived components. Piperacillin and aztreonam showed the largest inoculum effect, and cefoxitin showed the smallest. The other cephalosporins tested (cefotetan, ceftizoxime, and ceftriaxone) showed an intermediate inoculum effect. In general, the inoculum effect was of greater magnitude for the penicillin and beta-lactamase inhibitor combinations than for the cephalosporins tested. Bactericidal activity was assayed and morphologic changes were monitored for selected strains exhibiting a large inoculum effect. MICs correlated with bactericidal activity at an inoculum level of 10(5) CFU/ml, while activity at 10(8) CFU/ml was variable. Cefoxitin demonstrated the least filamentous transformation and the most rapid bactericidal activity. Aztreonam showed the most marked filamentous transformation and was no longer bactericidal at 10(8) CFU/ml. The beta-lactamase inhibitor combinations showed variable bactericidal activity, and regrowth occurred with a number of strains with all three agents tested.
PMCID: PMC245050  PMID: 2039208

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