Distribution of serotypes and antibiotic resistance of invasive Pseudomonas aeruginosa in a multi-country collection

Shamima Nasrin, Nicolas Hegerle, Shaichi Sen, Joseph Nkeze, Sunil Sen, Jasnehta Permala-Booth, Myeongjin Choi, James Sinclair, Milagritos D. Tapia, J. Kristie Johnson, Samba O. Sow, Joshua T. Thaden, Vance G. Fowler, Karen A. Krogfelt, Annelie Brauner, Efthymia Protonotariou, Eirini Christaki, Yuichiro Shindo, Andrea L. Kwa, Sadia ShakoorAshika Singh-Moodley, Olga Perovic, Jan Jacobs, Octavie Lunguya, Raphael Simon, Alan S. Cross, Sharon M. Tennant

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

24 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Pseudomonas aeruginosa is an opportunistic pathogen that causes a wide range of acute and chronic infections and is frequently associated with healthcare-associated infections. Because of its ability to rapidly acquire resistance to antibiotics, P. aeruginosa infections are difficult to treat. Alternative strategies, such as a vaccine, are needed to prevent infections. We collected a total of 413 P. aeruginosa isolates from the blood and cerebrospinal fluid of patients from 10 countries located on 4 continents during 2005–2017 and characterized these isolates to inform vaccine development efforts. We determined the diversity and distribution of O antigen and flagellin types and antibiotic susceptibility of the invasive P. aeruginosa. We used an antibody-based agglutination assay and PCR for O antigen typing and PCR for flagellin typing. We determined antibiotic susceptibility using the Kirby-Bauer disk diffusion method. Results: Of the 413 isolates, 314 (95%) were typed by an antibody-based agglutination assay or PCR (n = 99). Among the 20 serotypes of P. aeruginosa, the most common serotypes were O1, O2, O3, O4, O5, O6, O8, O9, O10 and O11; a vaccine that targets these 10 serotypes would confer protection against more than 80% of invasive P. aeruginosa infections. The most common flagellin type among 386 isolates was FlaB (41%). Resistance to aztreonam (56%) was most common, followed by levofloxacin (42%). We also found that 22% of strains were non-susceptible to meropenem and piperacillin-tazobactam. Ninety-nine (27%) of our collected isolates were resistant to multiple antibiotics. Isolates with FlaA2 flagellin were more commonly multidrug resistant (p = 0.04). Conclusions: Vaccines targeting common O antigens and two flagellin antigens, FlaB and FlaA2, would offer an excellent strategy to prevent P. aeruginosa invasive infections.

Original languageEnglish
Article number13
JournalBMC Microbiology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2022


  • Flagellin
  • Multidrug resistance
  • Pseudomonas
  • Serotype


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