Objectives: To date, little is known about the molecular basis of antimicrobial resistance in Bordetella bronchiseptica, an important respiratory tract pathogen in pigs, dogs and cats. The aim of this study was to identify genes coding for trimethoprim resistance present in porcine B. bronchiseptica and to determine their localization, transferability and association with other resistance genes.
Methods: Six B. bronchiseptica isolates with elevated MICs of trimethoprim were investigated by PCR for the presence of trimethoprim resistance genes and their association with class 1 integrons. The amplicons obtained were cloned and sequenced. Plasmid localization of these integrons was confirmed by transformation and conjugation. Isolates carrying the same integron were compared for their genetic relatedness by XbaI and SpeI pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE).
Results: Five B. bronchiseptica isolates carried a class 1 integron with two gene cassettes, one carrying the trimethoprim resistance gene dfrA1 and the other the chloramphenicol resistance gene catB3. This integron was present on a common conjugative plasmid in four of the five isolates and on the chromosome in the remaining isolate. All five B. bronchiseptica isolates proved to be related on the basis of their PFGE patterns. Another isolate had a class 1 integron with a dfrB1 and a catB2 cassette on a structurally different conjugative plasmid. The sulphonamide resistance gene sul1 was detected in the 3'-conserved segment of both types of integrons.
Conclusions: This is the first report of trimethoprim, chloramphenicol and sulphonamide resistance genes and class 1 integrons in B. bronchiseptica isolates.