Isolation of the first New Delhi metallo-ß-lactamase-1 (NDM-1)-producing and colistin-resistant Klebsiella pneumoniae sequence type ST15 from a digestive carrier in Albania, May 2018

J Glob Antimicrob Resist. 2019 Jun;17:142-144. doi: 10.1016/j.jgar.2018.12.002. Epub 2018 Dec 14.


Objectives: Carbapenemases represent a public health threat, as they can spread through horizontal gene transfer and cause outbreaks. New Delhi metallo-ß-lactamase-1 (NDM-1) is a metallo-ß-lactamase that has spread rapidly in the last decade, causing worldwide alarm. This study aimed to describe the first isolate of NDM-1-producing and extensively drug resistant Klebsiella pneumoniae in Albania, its clinical context and genetic characterization.

Methods: Strain was isolated from both oral and rectal intensive care unit admission screening swabs of a 70-year-old male patient with no history of international travel in the previous 6 months. Sequencing was performed by Illumina NextSeq500 platform, with a paired-end run of 2 by 150bp, after Nextera XT paired-end library preparation. Sequencing reads were assembled using SPAdes Genome (version 3.6.1) with accurate de novo settings. The assembled contigs were uploaded into the online tools: BIGSdb-Kp, ResFinder and PlasmidFinder.

Results: Isolate was resistant to all tested antibiotics but tigecycline and trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole. Sequencing revealed the presence of acquired resistance genes conferring resistance to β-lactams (blaNDM-1, blaCMY-6, blaCTX-M-15and blaSHV-28), aminoglycosides (rmtC, aac(6')-Ib3), fluoroquinolones (oqxA, oqxB, aac(6')-Ib-cr), fosfomycin (fosA) and sulfonamides (sul1). The blaNDM-1 gene was located on an IncA/C2 plasmid. Plasmid mediated mcr-1 to mcr-8 genes were absent in both isolates. Resistance to colistin was due to an amino acid substitution (Thr157Pro) in PmrB protein.

Conclusions: NDM-1-producing Enterobacteriaceae are spreading in the Balkans. Identification of NDM-1-producing and extensively drug resistant K. pneumoniae ST15 in Albania is a cause for serious concern. There should be a continuous national and Balkan multinational surveillance of blaNDM-1-carrying isolates.

Keywords: Colistin resistance; Digestive carrier; Extensively drug resistant; Klebsiella pneumoniae; MBL (metallo-ß-lactamase); NDM-1 (New Delhi metallo-ß-lactamase-1).

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Albania
  • Anti-Bacterial Agents / pharmacology*
  • Bacterial Typing Techniques
  • Colistin / pharmacology*
  • Drug Resistance, Multiple, Bacterial
  • Gastrointestinal Tract / microbiology*
  • Humans
  • Klebsiella Infections / microbiology
  • Klebsiella pneumoniae / classification
  • Klebsiella pneumoniae / drug effects*
  • Klebsiella pneumoniae / isolation & purification
  • Longitudinal Studies
  • Male
  • Microbial Sensitivity Tests
  • Mouth / microbiology
  • Multilocus Sequence Typing
  • Plasmids / genetics
  • Rectum / microbiology
  • Sequence Analysis, DNA
  • beta-Lactamases*


  • Anti-Bacterial Agents
  • beta-Lactamases
  • beta-lactamase NDM-1
  • Colistin