Multidrug-resistant infections in long-term care facilities: extended-spectrum β-lactamase–producing Enterobacteriaceae and hypervirulent antibiotic resistant Clostridium difficile

Maria Giufrè, Marisa Accogli, Enrico Ricchizzi, Fabrizio Barbanti, Claudio Farina, Paolo Fazii, Romano Mattei, Mario Sarti, Agostino Barozzi, Rossella Buttazzi, Marina Cosentino, Maria Nardone, Vincenzo Savini, Patrizia Spigaglia, Maria Luisa Moro, Marina Cerquetti

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Infections due to multidrug-resistant (MDR) organisms in long-term care facilities (LTCFs) residents constitute a public health concern. This multicenter study investigated the frequency of ESBL-producing pathogens and MDR Clostridium difficile in clinical specimens from LTCF residents in Italy. During October 2014–March 2015, all urine and diarrheic fecal samples from LTCF residents (≥65 years) with suspected urinary tract infection or C. difficile infection, respectively, received for diagnosis by 4 hospital laboratories located in different cities were analyzed. Antibiotic susceptibility testing, characterization of resistance genes, and molecular typing of pathogens were performed. Of 806 urine cultures collected from 626 residents at 44 different LTCFs, 492 were positive for microbial infection. Of these, 158 were positive for at least an ESBL-producing Enterobacteriaceae species (32.1%), with Escherichia coli as the most frequent ESBL pathogen (23.4%) followed by Klebsiella pneumoniae (4.5%). Furthermore, 4 carbapenemase producers (0.8%) (1 E. coli with VIM-1and 3 K. pneumoniae with KPC-3) were detected. The CTX-M-15 type ESBL predominated in both E. coli (71.3%) and K. pneumoniae (77.3%). Most E. coli isolates (82.6%) belonged to the ST131/H30 clone/subclone. For K. pneumoniae, ST307 and ST15 were frequent (31.8% and 22.7%, respectively), but isolates harboring bla KPC-3 belonged to CC258. Of 136 diarrheic fecal samples collected from 111 residents at 26 different LTCFs, 21 (15.4%) were positive for toxigenic C. difficile; of these, 13 (62%) were MDR (resistant to 3 or more antimicrobial agents of different classes). The predominant C. difficile polymerase chain reaction ribotype was 356/607 (42.9%), followed by 018, 449, and 078 (14% each). Public health efforts are needed to contain the diffusion of CTX-M-producing Enterobacteriaceae and MDR C. difficile in LTCF settings.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)275-281
Number of pages7
JournalDiagnostic Microbiology and Infectious Disease
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Jul 1 2018



  • Carbapenemase-producing pathogens
  • MLST clones
  • Multidrug-resistant pathogens
  • PCR ribotyping
  • ST131 Escherichia coli

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology (medical)
  • Infectious Diseases

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