Salmonella Typhi acquires diverse plasmids from other Enterobacteriaceae to develop cephalosporin resistance


Jobin John JacobAgila Kumari PragasamKarthick VasudevanBalaji VeeraraghavanGagandeep KangJacob JohnVasant Nagvekar, and Ankur Mutreja


Background: Recent reports have established the emergence and dissemination of extensively drug resistant (XDR) H58 Salmonella Typhi clone in Pakistan. In India where typhoid fever is endemic, only sporadic cases of ceftriaxone resistant S. Typhi are reported. This study aimed at elucidating the phylogenetic evolutionary framework of ceftriaxone resistant S. Typhi isolates from India to predict their potential dissemination.

Methods: Five ceftriaxone resistant S. Typhi isolates from three tertiary care hospitals in India were sequenced on an Ion Torrent Personal Genome Machine (PGM). A core genome single-nucleotide-polymorphism (SNP) based phylogeny of the isolates in comparison to the global collection of MDR and XDR S. Typhi isolates was built. Two of five isolates were additionally sequenced using Oxford Nanopore MinION to completely characterize the plasmid and understand its transmission dynamics within Enterobacteriaceae.

Results: Comparative genomic analysis and detailed plasmid characterization indicate that while in Pakistan (4.3.1 lineage I) the XDR trait is associated with blaCTX-M-15 gene on IncY plasmid, in India (4.3.1 lineage II), the ceftriaxone resistance is due to short term persistence of resistance plasmids such as IncX3 (blaSHV-12) or IncN (blaTEM-1B + blaDHA-1).

Conclusion: Considering the selection pressure exerted by the extensive use of ceftriaxone in India, there are potential risks for the occurrence of plasmid transmission events in the predominant H58 lineages. Therefore, continuous monitoring of S. Typhi lineages carrying plasmid-mediated cephalosporin resistant genes is vital not just for India but also globally.

Click here to read the article, published in Genomics.