Comparative genomics reveals a well-conserved intrinsic resistome in the emerging multidrug-resistant pathogen Cupriavidus gilardii

Cristian Ruiz, Ashley McCarley, Manuel Luis Espejo, Kerry K. Cooper, Dana E. Harmon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


The Gram-negative bacterium Cupriavidus gilardii is an emerging multidrug-resistant pathogen found in many environments. However, little is known about this species or its antibiotic resistance mechanisms. We used biochemical tests, antibiotic susceptibility experiments, and whole-genome sequencing to characterize an environmental C. gilardii isolate. Like clinical isolates, this isolate was resistant to meropenem, gentamicin, and other antibiotics. Resistance to these antibiotics appeared to be related to the large number of intrinsic antibiotic resistance genes found in this isolate. As determined by comparative genomics, this resistome was also well conserved in the only two other C. gilardii strains sequenced to date. The intrinsic resistome of C. gilardii did not include the colistin resistance gene mcr-5, which was in a transposon present only in one strain. The intrinsic resistome of C. gilardii was comprised of (i) many multidrug efflux pumps, such as a homolog of the Pseudomonas aeruginosa MexAB-OprM pump that may be involved in resistance to meropenem, other β-lactams, and aminoglycosides; (ii) a novel β-lactamase (OXA-837) that decreases susceptibility to ampicillin but not to other β-lactams tested; (iii) a new aminoglycoside 3-N-acetyltransferase [AAC(3)- IVb, AacC10] that decreases susceptibility to gentamicin and tobramycin; and (iv) a novel partially conserved aminoglycoside 3"-adenylyltransferase [ANT(3")-Ib, AadA32] that decreases susceptibility to spectinomycin and streptomycin. These findings provide the first mechanistic insight into the intrinsic resistance of C. gilardii to multiple antibiotics and its ability to become resistant to an increasing number of drugs during therapy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere00631-19
Issue number5
StatePublished - 2019


  • Aminoglycosides
  • Antibiotic resistance
  • Carbapenems
  • Cupriavidus
  • Cupriavidus gilardii

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • Molecular Biology


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