Skip to main content

Thank you for visiting You are using a browser version with limited support for CSS. To obtain the best experience, we recommend you use a more up to date browser (or turn off compatibility mode in Internet Explorer). In the meantime, to ensure continued support, we are displaying the site without styles and JavaScript.

Co-transfer of blaNDM-5 and mcr-1 by an IncX3–X4 hybrid plasmid in Escherichia coli


Carbapenem and colistin are the last-resort antibiotics used for treating multidrug-resistant Gram-negative pathogens. Here, we report, for the first time, co-transfer of resistance to both classes of antibiotics by a mobile IncX3–X4 hybrid plasmid in an Escherichia coli isolate. Spread of such a plasmid is of great concern for clinical therapy, and heightened efforts are needed to control its dissemination.

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution

Relevant articles

Open Access articles citing this article.

Access options

Rent or buy this article

Prices vary by article type



Prices may be subject to local taxes which are calculated during checkout

Figure 1: Genetic features of pCQ02-121 and proposed models for its formation.


  1. Liu, Y. Y. et al. Lancet Infect. Dis. 16, 161–168 (2016).

    Article  Google Scholar 

  2. Zurfuh, K. et al. Antimicrob. Agents Chemother. 60, 2594–2595 (2016).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  3. Perrin-Guyomard, A. et al. Eurosurveillance 21, 30135 (2016).

    Article  Google Scholar 

  4. Du, H. et al. Lancet Infect. Dis. 16, 287–288 (2016).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  5. Falgenhauer, L. et al. Lancet Infect. Dis. 16, 282–283 (2016).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  6. Poirel, L. et al. Lancet Infect Dis. 16, 281 (2016).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  7. Yao, X. et al. Lancet Infect. Dis. 16, 288–289 (2016).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  8. Sun, J. et al. Antimicrob. Agents Chemother. 60, 5014–5017 (2016).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  9. McGann, P. et al. Antimicrob. Agents Chemother. 60, 4420–4421 (2016).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  10. Johnson, T. J. et al. Plasmid 68, 43–50 (2012).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  11. Espedido, B. A. et al. J. Clin. Pathol. 68, 835–838 (2015).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  12. Li, A. et al. Antimicrob. Agents Chemother. 60, 4351–4354 (2016).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  13. Wirth, T. et al. Mol. Microbiol. 60, 1136–1151 (2006).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  14. Barton, B. M. et al. Anal. Biochem. 226, 235–240 (1995).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  15. Riley, M. et al. Nucleic Acids Res. 34, 1–9 (2006).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  16. Harmer, C. J. et al. mBio 6, e01866 (2015).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  17. Harmer, C. J. et al. mBio 5, e01801 (2014).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  18. Llosa, M. et al. J. Bacteriol. 176, 3210–3217 (1994).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  19. Nordmann, P. et al. Emerg. Infect. Dis. 18, 1503–1507 (2012).

    Article  Google Scholar 

  20. Poirel, L. et al. Antimicrob. Agents Chemother. 55, 5403–5407 (2011).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  21. Lorenzo-Diaz, F. et al. J. Bacteriol. 191, 720–727 (2009).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  22. Carattoli, A. et al. J. Microbiol. Methods 63, 219–228 (2005).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  23. Aziz, R. K. et al. BMC Genomics 9, 75 (2008).

    Article  Google Scholar 

  24. Sandegren, L. et al. J. Antimicrob. Chemother. 67, 74–83 (2012).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

Download references


This work was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation and Natural Science Foundation of Guangdong Province, China (U1201214), the Program for Changjiang Scholars and Innovative Research Team in University of Ministry of Education of China (IRT13063), the Natural Science Foundation of Guangdong Province (S2012030006590) and the National Basic Research Program of China (2016YFC1200100).

Author information

Authors and Affiliations



J.S., R.-S.Y., Q.Z., Y.F., X.-P.L. and Y.-H.L. designed the study and prepared the manuscript. R.-S.Y., L.-X.F., J.X., L.L., X.-Y.L. and J.-H.D. performed experiments. All authors discussed the results. J.S., R.-S.Y., Q.Z., Y.F., X.L. and Y.-H.L. analysed data. J.S., Q.Z., Y.F. and Y.-H.L. drafted this manuscript.

Corresponding authors

Correspondence to Xiao-Ping Liao or Ya-Hong Liu.

Ethics declarations

Competing interests

The authors declare no competing financial interests.

Supplementary information

Supplementary information

Supplementary Figures 1-3, Supplementary Tables 1-2 (PDF 1331 kb)

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Check for updates. Verify currency and authenticity via CrossMark

Cite this article

Sun, J., Yang, RS., Zhang, Q. et al. Co-transfer of blaNDM-5 and mcr-1 by an IncX3–X4 hybrid plasmid in Escherichia coli. Nat Microbiol 1, 16176 (2016).

Download citation

  • Received:

  • Accepted:

  • Published:

  • DOI:

This article is cited by


Quick links

Nature Briefing

Sign up for the Nature Briefing newsletter — what matters in science, free to your inbox daily.

Get the most important science stories of the day, free in your inbox. Sign up for Nature Briefing