Multiomics Assessment of Gene Expression in a Clinical Strain of CTX-M-15-Producing ST131 Escherichia coli

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Extended-spectrum beta-lactamase (ESBL)-producing strain C999 was isolated of a Spanish patient with urinary tract infection. Previous genotyping indicated that this strain presented a multidrug-resistance phenotype and carried beta-lactamase genes encoding CTX-M-15, TEM-1, and OXA-1 enzymes. The whole-cell proteome, and the membrane, cytoplasmic, periplasmic and extracellular sub-proteomes of C999 were obtained in this work by two-dimensional gel electrophoresis (2DE) followed by fingerprint sequencing through matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization time-of-flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF/MS). A total of 602 proteins were identified in the different cell fractions, several of which are related to stress response systems, cellular responses, and antibiotic and drug responses, consistent with the multidrug-resistance phenotype. In parallel, whole genome sequencing (WGS) and RNA sequencing (RNA-Seq) was done to identify and quantify the genes present and expressing. The prediction following WGS confirmed our strain as being serotype O25:H4 and sequence type ST131. The presence of proteins related to antibiotic resistance and virulence in an O25:H4-ST131 clone are serious indicators of the continued threat of antibiotic resistance spread amongst healthcare institutions. On a positive note, a multiomics approach can facilitate surveillance and more detailed characterization of virulent bacterial clones from hospital environments.