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Gene Review

vanB  -  D-alanine--D-lactate ligase

Staphylococcus aureus

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Disease relevance of vanA


High impact information on vanA


Chemical compound and disease context of vanA


Biological context of vanA

  • A DNA probe for vanA hybridized to the 120-kb plasmid [10].
  • We have analyzed the expression of the vanA operon in the three clinical isolates [7].
  • Results for each testing method for each Enterococcus strain were interpreted as susceptible, intermediate, or resistant according to current National Committee for Clinical Laboratory Standards (NCCLS) criteria and compared to the vancomycin resistance genotype (i.e., vanA, vanB, vanC-1, or vanC-2/3) [11].
  • The resistance gene vanA has been cloned, and its nucleotide sequence has been determined [12].
  • In this study, we demonstrate the specificity and sensitivity of our platform for detection of the genes conferring methicillin (mecA) and vancomycin (vanA) resistance as well as a gene encoding the virulence factor Panton-Valentine leucocidin (lukF) in S. aureus isolates [13].

Anatomical context of vanA

  • The purpose of our studies was to understand how vanA is expressed in the heterologous background of S. aureus and how it interacts with the mecA-based resistance mechanism, which is also present in these strains and is targeted on cell wall biosynthesis [4].

Associations of vanA with chemical compounds

  • Low-level glycopeptide resistance of S. aureus PA-VRSA is thus likely due to instability of the genetic element, plasmid or transposon, carrying the vanA operon associated with a longer lag phase before growth resumes after induction by vancomycin [7].
  • All S. aureus and 93 CoNS were subjected to MIC testing (against vancomycin, teicolplanin and oxacillin); Brain Heart Infusion (BHI) vancomycin screen agar test; disc diffusion testing, and PCR for mecA, vanA and vanB genes detection [14].
  • The vanA gene is part of a cluster of plasmid genes responsible for synthesis of peptidoglycan precursors containing a depsipeptide instead of the usual D-alanyl-D-alanine terminus [12].
  • No differences were seen for susceptibility of vanA, vanB1, and vanD VREF strains for daptomycin, linezolid, or QD [15].
  • We report the activity of the new glycylcycline antimicrobial agent GAR-936 against 37 clinical isolates of vancomycin-resistant enterococci (including organisms carrying the vanA, vanB, vanC-1, and vanC-2/3 genes), 26 clinical isolates of methicillin-resistant S. aureus and 30 clinical isolates of high-level penicillin-resistant S. pneumoniae [16].

Analytical, diagnostic and therapeutic context of vanA

  • None of these isolates have demonstrated vanA/vanB gene by PCR [14].
  • Pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) and multilocus sequence typing analysis indicated that VRSA Hershey was the vanA-acquired variety of a common MRSA clone in our hospital with sequence type 5 (ST5) [17].
  • From the results of this epidemiological study, we propose that there was a possibility of contamination in this hospital, and that three of the six isolates may have acquired vanA independently [18].
  • Molecular-based diagnostic tests can provide data on the presence of methicillin-resistant S. aureus in the nares in ~1 h, whereas testing for the vanA and vanB resistance genes in enterococci isolated from perirectal samples can be completed in ~4 h [19].


  1. Successful therapy of experimental endocarditis caused by vancomycin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus with a combination of vancomycin and beta-lactam antibiotics. Fox, P.M., Lampen, R.J., Stumpf, K.S., Archer, G.L., Climo, M.W. Antimicrob. Agents Chemother. (2006) [Pubmed]
  2. Synergism between {beta}-Lactams and Glycopeptides against VanA-Type Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus aureus and Heterologous Expression of the vanA Operon. P??richon, B., Courvalin, P. Antimicrob. Agents Chemother. (2006) [Pubmed]
  3. Detection of clinically relevant antibiotic-resistance genes in municipal wastewater using real-time PCR (TaqMan). Volkmann, H., Schwartz, T., Bischoff, P., Kirchen, S., Obst, U. J. Microbiol. Methods (2004) [Pubmed]
  4. High level oxacillin and vancomycin resistance and altered cell wall composition in Staphylococcus aureus carrying the staphylococcal mecA and the enterococcal vanA gene complex. Severin, A., Tabei, K., Tenover, F., Chung, M., Clarke, N., Tomasz, A. J. Biol. Chem. (2004) [Pubmed]
  5. High-Level Vancomycin-Resistant Staphylococcus aureus Isolates Associated with a Polymicrobial Biofilm. Weigel, L.M., Donlan, R.M., Shin, D.H., Jensen, B., Clark, N.C., McDougal, L.K., Zhu, W., Musser, K.A., Thompson, J., Kohlerschmidt, D., Dumas, N., Limberger, R.J., Patel, J.B. Antimicrob. Agents Chemother. (2007) [Pubmed]
  6. Resistance to glycopeptide antibiotics in the teicoplanin producer is mediated by van gene homologue expression directing the synthesis of a modified cell wall peptidoglycan. Beltrametti, F., Consolandi, A., Carrano, L., Bagatin, F., Rossi, R., Leoni, L., Zennaro, E., Selva, E., Marinelli, F. Antimicrob. Agents Chemother. (2007) [Pubmed]
  7. Heterologous expression of the enterococcal vanA operon in methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus. Périchon, B., Courvalin, P. Antimicrob. Agents Chemother. (2004) [Pubmed]
  8. Antibacterial susceptibility of a vancomycin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus strain isolated at the Hershey Medical Center. Bozdogan, B., Esel, D., Whitener, C., Browne, F.A., Appelbaum, P.C. J. Antimicrob. Chemother. (2003) [Pubmed]
  9. The relationship of a clonal outbreak of Enterococcus faecium vanA to methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus incidence in an Australian hospital. Bartley, P.B., Schooneveldt, J.M., Looke, D.F., Morton, A., Johnson, D.W., Nimmo, G.R. J. Hosp. Infect. (2001) [Pubmed]
  10. Vancomycin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus isolate from a patient in Pennsylvania. Tenover, F.C., Weigel, L.M., Appelbaum, P.C., McDougal, L.K., Chaitram, J., McAllister, S., Clark, N., Killgore, G., O'Hara, C.M., Jevitt, L., Patel, J.B., Bozdogan, B. Antimicrob. Agents Chemother. (2004) [Pubmed]
  11. Comparison of agar dilution, broth microdilution, E-test, disk diffusion, and automated Vitek methods for testing susceptibilities of Enterococcus spp. to vancomycin. Kohner, P.C., Patel, R., Uhl, J.R., Garin, K.M., Hopkins, M.K., Wegener, L.T., Cockerill, F.R. J. Clin. Microbiol. (1997) [Pubmed]
  12. Resistance of enterococci to aminoglycosides and glycopeptides. Leclercq, R., Dutka-Malen, S., Brisson-Noël, A., Molinas, C., Derlot, E., Arthur, M., Duval, J., Courvalin, P. Clin. Infect. Dis. (1992) [Pubmed]
  13. Use of a multiplex molecular beacon platform for rapid detection of methicillin and vancomycin resistance in Staphylococcus aureus. Sinsimer, D., Leekha, S., Park, S., Marras, S.A., Koreen, L., Willey, B., Naidich, S., Musser, K.A., Kreiswirth, B.N. J. Clin. Microbiol. (2005) [Pubmed]
  14. Emergence of vancomycin resistant Staphylococcus aureus (VRSA) from a tertiary care hospital from northern part of India. Tiwari, H.K., Sen, M.R. BMC Infect. Dis. (2006) [Pubmed]
  15. In vitro activities of Daptomycin, Linezolid, and Quinupristin-Dalfopristin against a challenge panel of Staphylococci and Enterococci, including vancomycin-intermediate staphylococcus aureus and vancomycin-resistant Enterococcus faecium. Jevitt, L.A., Smith, A.J., Williams, P.P., Raney, P.M., McGowan, J.E., Tenover, F.C. Microb. Drug Resist. (2003) [Pubmed]
  16. In vitro activity of GAR-936 against vancomycin-resistant enterococci, methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus and penicillin-resistant Streptococcus pneumoniae. Patel, R., Rouse, M.S., Piper, K.E., Steckelberg, J.M. Diagn. Microbiol. Infect. Dis. (2000) [Pubmed]
  17. Derivatives of a vancomycin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus strain isolated at Hershey Medical Center. Bozdogan, B., Ednie, L., Credito, K., Kosowska, K., Appelbaum, P.C. Antimicrob. Agents Chemother. (2004) [Pubmed]
  18. Epidemiological study of vancomycin-resistant enterococcus isolated from a single medical university hospital in Japan. Ishikawa, K., Hayakawa, S., Katayama, T., Hoshinaga, K., Fukaya, S., Torikai, K., Nakano, H., Funabiki, T., Naide, Y. J. Infect. Chemother. (2001) [Pubmed]
  19. Rapid detection and identification of bacterial pathogens using novel molecular technologies: infection control and beyond. Tenover, F.C. Clin. Infect. Dis. (2007) [Pubmed]
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