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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

In vitro selection of one-step mutants of Streptococcus pneumoniae resistant to different oral beta-lactam antibiotics is associated with alterations of PBP2x.

Many oral penicillins and cephalosporins are used to treat clinical infections caused by Streptococcus pneumoniae. Therefore, using different beta-lactams as selectors, we estimated the frequencies of one-step mutations leading to resistance. Resistant mutants were obtained from penicillin-susceptible, intermediately resistant, and penicillin resistant strains. For cefixime, cefuroxime, cefpodoxime, cefotaxime, and ceftriaxone, the frequencies of mutation ranged from 10(-6) to 10(-8) when resistant mutants were selected at 2- to 8-fold the MIC, and the MICs increased 2- to 16-fold. For ampicillin, ampicillin-sulbactam, amoxicillin, amoxicillin-clavulanic acid, cefaclor, and loracarbef, the frequencies of mutation were about 10(-7) to 10(-8), and the MICs increased twofold at most. One to three resistance profiles of the resulting mutants were selected for each of the selecting antibiotics. Among those, some showed resistance to the cephalosporins associated with a 2- to 32-fold increase in susceptibility to the penicillins. Competition experiments showed a decreased affinity of PBP2x for cefpodoxime in all mutants. In some mutants that were more susceptible to amoxicillin, a decreased affinity of PBP2x for cefpodoxime was associated with an increased affinity for amoxicillin and a particular substitution of alanine for threonine at position 550 just after the KSG triad. From these results we infer (i) that among the beta-lactams tested the penicillins, cefaclor, and loracarbef selected one-step resistant mutants less frequently and that they achieved a lower level of resistance, and (ii) that mutants with different profiles may have acquired different point mutations in PBP2x.[1]


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