Silent mutations in ribosomal protein genes are associated with high-risk clones of carbapenem-resistant Acinetobacter baumannii prevalent in Brazil

Objectives: To analyze the relationship of ribosomal protein mutations and clonality of high-risk clones Acinetobacter baumannii. Methods: Seventy-nine carbapenem-resistant A. baumannii were subjected to whole-genome sequencing (Illumina NextSeq), and codifying sequences of ribosomal proteins were extracted and screened for mutations. MALDI-TOF MS analysis (Bruker Biotyper) and Spectra data from MALDI-TOF was employed to generate a dendrogram based on principal component analysis (PCA) data. Clones were identified by Multilocus sequencing typing (MLST) based on WGS. Results: Ribosomal RNA protein sequences extracted from the genomes identified mutations that were associated with clonal complexes, but most of them were silent. PCA did not cluster the isolates according to their clonality identified by MLST. Conclusions: By comparing the nucleotide and amino acid sequences of diversified A. baumannii, and Bruker Biotyper profiles, we showed that silent mutations in ribosomal RNA nucleotides are associated with clonal complexes, but since most of the mutations were silent, MALDI-TOF MS raw data was not a useful tool for typing the high-risk clones of this species.
Keywords
MLST;  MALDI-TOF;  Bruker;  High-risk clones;  Mass spectrometry;  WGS

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Barcellos TAF, Bueno MS, Cunha MPV, Nagamori FO, Carvalho E, Takagi EH, et al. Silent mutations in ribosomal protein genes are associated with high-risk clones of carbapenem-resistant Acinetobacter baumannii prevalent in Brazil. Infect. Genet. Evol.. 2021 Mar;88:104686. doi:10.1016/j.meegid.2020.104686.
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