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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.

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


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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




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.

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The authors declare no competing financial interests.

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Supplementary information

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

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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).

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