International Microbiology, Vol 20, No 4 (2017)

Transmission and survival of carbapenem-resistant Acinetobacter baumannii outside hospital setting

Ana Kovacic, Martina Seruga Music, Svjetlana Dekic, Marija Tonkic, Anita Novak, Zana Rubic, Jasna Hrenovic, Ivana Goic-Barisic


Acinetobacter baumannii origin and its epidemiology is under a great concern worldwide since this microorganism has become a leading nosocomial pathogen of the 21th century among the "ESKAPE" group of microorganisms. The aim of the study was to monitor and explore the epidemiology of this important hospital pathogen in the second largest clinical university hospital in Croatia. The presence of A. baumannii in hospital wastewater, as a route for possible transmission outside of the hospital setting, as well as its survival in environmental conditions including seawater, was investigated. During the examination period, ten both carbapenem and multidrug-resistant isolates of A. baumannii were recovered from hospital wastewater and compared to the clinical isolates originating from the same monitoring period. Multiplex PCR confirmed that four wastewater isolates harboured blaOXA-23-like, while five wastewater isolates harboured blaOXA-40-like genes sharing 100% sequence identity with blaOXA-72 sequence described in the same hospital in 2009, confirming the presence of an endemic cluster. Survival of A. baumannii in natural seawater was examined during 50 days of monitoring and to the best of our knowledge, was performed for the first time.

Keywords: Acinetobacter baumannii · hospital wastewater · transmission · seawater

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