Characterization of an IncFII Plasmid Encoding NDM-1 From Escherichia Coli ST131

PLoS One. 2012;7(4):e34752. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0034752. Epub 2012 Apr 12.


Background: The current spread of the gene encoding the metallo-ß-lactamase NDM-1 in Enterobacteriaceae is linked to a variety of surrounding genetic structures and plasmid scaffolds.

Methodology: The whole sequence of plasmid pGUE-NDM carrying the bla(NDM-1) gene was determined by high-density pyrosequencing and a genomic comparative analysis with other bla(NDM-1)-negative IncFII was performed.

Principal findings: Plasmid pGUE-NDM replicating in Escherichia coli confers resistance to many antibiotic molecules including β-lactams, aminoglycosides, trimethoprim, and sulfonamides. It is 87,022 bp in-size and carries the two β-lactamase genes bla(NDM-1) and bla(OXA-1), together with three aminoglycoside resistance genes aacA4, aadA2, and aacC2. Comparative analysis of the multidrug resistance locus contained a module encompassing the bla(NDM-1) gene that is actually conserved among different structures identified in other enterobacterial isolates. This module was constituted by the bla(NDM-1) gene, a fragment of insertion sequence ISAba125 and a bleomycin resistance encoding gene.

Significance: This is the first characterized bla(NDM-1)-carrying IncFII-type plasmid. Such association between the bla(NDM-1) gene and an IncFII-type plasmid backbone is extremely worrisome considering that this plasmid type is known to spread efficiently, as examplified with the worldwide dissemination of bla(CTX-M-15)-borne IncFII plasmids.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Drug Resistance, Multiple, Bacterial / genetics
  • Escherichia coli / genetics*
  • Microbial Sensitivity Tests
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Plasmids / genetics
  • Sequence Analysis, DNA
  • beta-Lactamases / chemistry
  • beta-Lactamases / genetics*


  • beta lactamase NDM-4, E coli
  • beta-Lactamases

Associated data

  • GENBANK/JQ364967