Biofilm formation, antimicrobial susceptibility and virulence genes of Uropathogenic Escherichia coli isolated from clinical isolates in Uganda.BMC Infect Dis. 2020 Jun 29; 20(1):453.BI
Uropathogenic E. coli is the leading cause of Urinary tract infections (UTIs), contributing to 80-90% of all community-acquired and 30-50% of all hospital-acquired UTIs. Biofilm forming Uropathogenic E. coli are associated with persistent and chronic inflammation leading to complicated and or recurrent UTIs. Biofilms provide an environment for poor antibiotic penetration and horizontal transfer of virulence genes which favors the development of Multidrug-resistant organisms (MDRO). Understanding biofilm formation and antimicrobial resistance determinants of Uropathogenic E. coli strains will provide insight into the development of treatment options for biofilm-associated UTIs. The aim of this study was to determine the biofilm forming capability, presence of virulence genes and antimicrobial susceptibility pattern of Uropathogenic E. coli isolates in Uganda.
This was a cross-sectional study carried in the Clinical Microbiology and Molecular biology laboratories at the Department of Medical Microbiology, Makerere University College of Health Sciences. We randomly selected 200 Uropathogenic E. coli clinical isolates among the stored isolates collected between January 2018 and December 2018 that had significant bacteriuria (> 105 CFU). All isolates were subjected to biofilm detection using the Congo Red Agar method and Antimicrobial susceptibility testing was performed using the Kirby disk diffusion method. The isolates were later subjected PCR for the detection of Urovirulence genes namely; Pap, Fim, Sfa, Afa, Hly and Cnf, using commercially designed primers.
In this study, 62.5% (125/200) were positive biofilm formers and 78% (156/200) of these were multi-drug resistant (MDR). The isolates were most resistant to Trimethoprim sulphamethoxazole and Amoxicillin (93%) followed by gentamycin (87%) and the least was imipenem (0.5%). Fim was the most prevalent Urovirulence gene (53.5%) followed by Pap (21%), Sfa (13%), Afa (8%), Cnf (5.5%) and Hyl (0%).
We demonstrate a high prevalence of biofilm-forming Uropathogenic E. coli strains that are highly associated with the MDR phenotype. We recommend routine surveillance of antimicrobial resistance and biofilm formation to understand the antibiotics suitable in the management of biofilm-associated UTIs.