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Open AccessArticle

Interference in Pheromone-Responsive Conjugation of a High-Level Bacitracin Resistant Enterococcus faecalis Plasmid of Poultry Origin

GREMIP research group, Department of Pathology and Microbiology, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, University of Montreal, 3200 Sicotte Street, Saint-Hyacinthe, QC J2S 7C6, Canada
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Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
These authors contributed equally to this work.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2013, 10(9), 4245-4260; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph10094245
Received: 1 August 2013 / Revised: 29 August 2013 / Accepted: 3 September 2013 / Published: 11 September 2013
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Antimicrobial Resistance Prevention and Control)
The current study reports on contact interference of a high-level bacitracin- resistant pheromone-responsive plasmid of Enterococcus faecalis strain 543 of poultry origin during conjugative transfer of bcr antimicrobial resistance genes using a polyclonal antiserum aggregation substance44–560 (AS). After induction with pheromones produced by the recipient strain E. faecalis JH2-2, clumping of the donor E. faecalis strain 543 was observed as well as high transfer frequencies of bcr in short time broth mating. Filter mating assays from donor strain E. faecalis 543 to the recipient strain E. faecalis JH2-2 revealed conjugative transfer of asa1 (AS), bcrRAB and traB (negative regulator pheromone response) genes. The presence of these genes in transconjugants was confirmed by antimicrobial susceptibility testing, PCR, Southern hybridization and sequencing. A significant reduction in formation of aggregates was observed when the polyclonal anti-AS44–560 was added in the pheromone-responsive conjugation experiments as compared to the induced state. Moreover, interference of anti-AS44–560 antibodies in pheromone-responsive conjugation was demonstrated by a reduction in horizontal transfer of asa1 and bcr genes between E. faecalis strain 543 and E. faecalis JH2-2. Reducing the pheromone-responsive conjugation of E. faecalis is of interest because of its clinical importance in the horizontal transfer of antimicrobial resistance. View Full-Text
Keywords: Enterococcus faecalis; pheromone-responsive conjugation; plasmid; bacitracin resistance genes; antiserum AS Enterococcus faecalis; pheromone-responsive conjugation; plasmid; bacitracin resistance genes; antiserum AS
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Tremblay, C.-L.; Archambault, M. Interference in Pheromone-Responsive Conjugation of a High-Level Bacitracin Resistant Enterococcus faecalis Plasmid of Poultry Origin. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2013, 10, 4245-4260.

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