Multidrug-resistant Escherichia coli soft tissue infection investigated with bacterial whole genome sequencing.
Buchanan R., Stoesser N., Crook D., Bowler ICJW.
A 45-year-old man with dilated cardiomyopathy presented with acute leg pain and erythema suggestive of necrotising fasciitis. Initial surgical exploration revealed no necrosis and treatment for a soft tissue infection was started. Blood and tissue cultures unexpectedly grew a Gram-negative bacillus, subsequently identified by an automated broth microdilution phenotyping system as an extended-spectrum β-lactamase producing Escherichia coli. The patient was treated with a 3-week course of antibiotics (ertapenem followed by ciprofloxacin) and debridement for small areas of necrosis, followed by skin grafting. The presence of E. coli triggered investigation of both host and pathogen. The patient was found to have previously undiagnosed liver disease, a risk factor for E. coli soft tissue infection. Whole genome sequencing of isolates from all specimens confirmed they were clonal, of sequence type ST131 and associated with a likely plasmid-associated AmpC (CMY-2), several other resistance genes and a number of virulence factors.