, Volume 49, Issue 4, pp 595-602
Date: 02 Sep 2011

Characterization of antibiotic resistance determinants in oral biofilms

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Oral biofilms contain numerous antibiotic resistance determinants that can be transferred within or outside of the oral cavity. The aim of this study was to evaluate the prevalence and the relative level of antibiotic resistance determinants from oral biofilms. Oral biofilm samples that were collected from healthy subjects and periodontitis patients were subjected to qualitative and quantitative analyses for selected antibiotic resistance determinants using PCR. The prevalence of tet(Q), tet(M), cfxA, and bla TEM was very high both in the patient and the healthy subject group, with a tendency toward higher values in the patient group, with the exception of erm(F), which was more prevalent in the healthy group. The two extended spectrum β-lactam (ESBL) resistance determinants bla SHV and bla TEM showed a dramatic difference, as bla TEM was present in all of the samples and bla SHV was not found at all. The aacA-aphD, vanA, and mecA genes were rarely detected, suggesting that they are not common in oral bacteria. A quantitative PCR analysis showed that the relative amount of resistance determinants present in oral biofilms of the patient group was much greater than that of the healthy group, exhibiting 17-, 13-, 145-, and 3-fold increases for tet(Q), tet(M), erm(F), and cfxA, respectively. The results of this study suggest that the oral antibiotic resistome is more diverse and abundant in periodontitis patients than in healthy subjects, suggesting that there is a difference in the diversity and distribution of antibiotic resistance in oral biofilms associated with health and disease.