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An Outbreak of ESBL-producing Klebsiella pneumoniae in an Iranian Referral Hospital: Epidemiology and Molecular Typing

[ Vol. 19 , Issue. 1 ]


Shima Mahmoudi, Babak Pourakbari, Aliakbar Rahbarimanesh, Mohammad Reza Abdosalehi, Keyghobad Ghadiri and Setareh Mamishi*   Pages 46 - 54 ( 9 )


Introduction: Klebsiella pneumoniae is a common cause of nosocomial infections; however, there is limited information in Iran regarding nosocomial outbreaks due to extended-spectrum β–lactamase (ESBL) producing K pneumoniae strains, particularly using molecular methods. The present study focused on the molecular mechanism of ESBL resistance and genetic relatedness in K. pneumoniae isolates causing nosocomial infections in an Iranian referral hospital.

Material and Methods: This study evaluated the antimicrobial resistance and molecular epidemiology of K. pneumoniae causing nosocomial infections in children between October 2013 and March 2014. The ESBL detection was carried out for all the isolates by the CLSI method and PCR was carried out for the detection of the blaSHV, blaTEM, and blaCTX-M genes among ESBL-producing K. pneumonia. Molecular typing of the K. pneumoniae was performed using random amplification of polymorphic DNA-polymerase chain reaction (RAPD-PCR).

Results: A total of 30 isolates of K. pneumoniae were used for epidemiological analysis. High rates of resistance to cefotaxime (n=29, 97%), cefazolin (n=29, 97%), cefepime (n=25, 83%) and gentamicin (n=23, 77%) were observed. A total of 29 strains (97%) produced ESBLs. The frequency of blaSHV, blaCTX-M and blaTEM genes among these isolates was 83% (n=25), 70% (n=21) and 57% (n=17), respectively. Surprisingly 11 isolated (37%) carried blaSHV, blaCTX-M and blaTEM genes simultaneously. Moreover, the concurrent presence of “blaSHV and blaCTX-M” and “blaSHV and blaTEM” was seen in 8 (27%) and 4 (13%) isolates, respectively. RAPDPCR analyses revealed that K. pneumoniae isolates belonged to 2 RAPD-PCR types among which one cluster counted for 28 isolates.

Conclusion: To our knowledge, this is the first published report of a nosocomial outbreak of ESBL-producing K. pneumoniae in children in Iran. Although the epidemiology of nosocomial infections with ESBL-producing organisms has not yet been explored in depth in Iran, our findings suggest that ESBL-producing organisms are already an established public health threat in our country.


Klebsiella pneumoniae, extended-spectrum β-lactamase, molecular typing, nosocomial infection, epidemiology, molecular typing.


Pediatric Infectious Disease Research Center, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Pediatric Infectious Disease Research Center, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Department of Pediatric Infectious Diseases, Bahrami Children Hospital, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Department of Infectious Diseases, Pediatrics Center of Excellence, Children's Medical Center, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Kermanshah University of Medical Sciences, Nosocomial Infections Research Center, Kermanshah, Pediatric Infectious Disease Research Center, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran

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