Antimicrobial resistance is a major global public health problem, with fluoroquinolone-resistant strains of Escherichia coli posing a significant threat. This study examines the genetic characterization of ESBL-producing E. coli isolates in Mexican hospitals, which are resistant to both cephalosporins and fluoroquinolones. A total of 23 ESBL-producing E. coli isolates were found to be positive for the qepA gene, which confers resistance to fluoroquinolones. These isolates exhibited drug resistance phenotypes and belonged to specific sequence types and phylogenetic groups. The genetic context of the qepA gene was identified in a novel genetic context flanked by IS26 sequences. Mating experiments showed the co-transfer of qepA1 and chrA determinants alongside bla CTX-M-15 genes, emphasizing the potential for these genetic structures to spread among Enterobacterales. The emergence of multidrug-resistant Gram-negative bacteria carrying these resistance genes is a significant clinical concern for public healthcare systems.
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© 2023, The Author(s) under exclusive licence to Sociedade Brasileira de Microbiologia.
- Efflux pump qepA
- Escherichia coli