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Antimicrobial resistant Enterobacteriaceae in Chilean bats

Zulma Rojas-Sereno1 | Daniel Streicker2 | Sylvain Godreuil3 | Tania Suarez1 | Verónica Yung4 | Michelle Lineros4 | Julio Benavides1

  1. Centro de Investigación para la Sustentabilidad y Doctorado en Medicina de la Conservación /Facultad Ciencias de la Vida, Universidad Andrés Bello, Santiago, Chile; 2. Institute of Biodiversity, Animal Health and Comparative Medicine, MRC-University of Glasgow Centre for Virus Research; Glasgow, UK; 3. MIVEGEC, Research Institute for Development, Montpellier, France; 4. Sección Rabia, Departamento Laboratorio Biomédico, Instituto de Salud Pública de Chile, Santiago, Chile.

Ponente: Zulma Rojas-Sereno,

Antimicrobial-resistant bacteria of clinical importance for humans and domestic animals such as extended-spectrum-beta-lactamase-producing (ESBL) and carbapenemase-resistant Enterobacteriaceae can be commonly found among wildlife worldwide. However, few studies have investigated their prevalence among bats, particularly the ones living in close proximity to humans. In this study, we aimed to estimate the prevalence of ESBL and Carbapenemase-resistant Enterobacteriaceae among non-rabid dead bats submitted to the rabies national passive surveillance program from the National Health Institute in Chile. Rectal swabs were collected for bats reported as rabies negative from February to November 2021. Samples were screened for extended-spectrum-beta-lactamase-producing (ESBL) in MacConkey media supplemented with cefotaxime (CEF) and for carbapenem-resistant Enterobacteriacea in MacConkey media supplemented with imipenem (IM) antibiotics. From 263 fecal samples, 45 (17%) were identified as cefotaxime-resistant enterobacteria including bats from 8 out of the 11 Chilean regions sampled. Most positive samples were obtained from Tadarida brasiliensis, although an individual of Histiotus macrotus, Lasiurus cinereus and L. varius also have resistant bacteria. MALDI-TOF identification of bacterial species shows that all bacteria were Rhanella aquatilis, except for one isolate of Pseudomonas azotoformans and another of Serratia fonticola. No lactose-positive Enterobacteria was resistant to Imipenem. To our knowledge, this is the first screening of antibiotic-resistant bacteria in bats of Chile, suggesting the potential fecal carriage of cephalosporin-resistant bacteria in bats, but low or no carriage of ESBL or Carbapenemase-resistant common Enterobacteria such as E. coli.

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