Induction of mexCD-oprJ operon for a multidrug efflux pump by disinfectants in wild-type Pseudomonas aeruginosa PAO1

J Antimicrob Chemother. 2003 Apr;51(4):991-4. doi: 10.1093/jac/dkg173. Epub 2003 Mar 13.


Induction of the MexCD-OprJ multidrug efflux pump was investigated in wild-type Pseudomonas aeruginosa PAO1. MexCD-OprJ was induced by clinically important disinfectants such as benzalkonium chloride and chlorhexidine gluconate, and by some cytotoxic agents such as tetraphenylphosphonium chloride, ethidium bromide and rhodamine 6G. MexCD-OprJ was not induced by norfloxacin, tetracycline, chloramphenicol, streptomycin, erythromycin or carbenicillin, although they are substrates for the pump. Cells of PAO1 showed increased resistance to norfloxacin when grown in the presence of the inducers of the mexCD-oprJ operon mentioned above. These results indicate that MexCD-OprJ plays an important role in intrinsic multidrug resistance in wild-type P. aeruginosa in hospitals where disinfectants are used frequently.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Bacterial Proteins / chemistry
  • Blotting, Western
  • Disinfectants / pharmacology
  • Drug Resistance, Multiple, Bacterial / genetics*
  • Membrane Transport Proteins / genetics*
  • Operon / genetics*
  • Plasmids / genetics
  • Pseudomonas aeruginosa / drug effects
  • Pseudomonas aeruginosa / genetics
  • Reverse Transcriptase Polymerase Chain Reaction


  • Bacterial Proteins
  • Disinfectants
  • Membrane Transport Proteins
  • OprJ protein, Pseudomonas aeruginosa