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Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy


CMY-2 is a plasmid-encoded Ambler class C cephalosporinase that is widely disseminated in Enterobacteriaceae and is responsible for expanded-spectrum cephalosporin resistance. As a result of resistance to both ceftazidime and β-lactamase inhibitors in strains carrying blaCMY, novel β-lactam–β-lactamase inhibitor combinations are sought to combat this significant threat to β-lactam therapy. Avibactam is a bridged diazabicyclo [3.2.1]octanone non-β-lactam β-lactamase inhibitor in clinical development that reversibly inactivates serine β-lactamases. To define the spectrum of activity of ceftazidime-avibactam, we tested the susceptibilities of Escherichia coli clinical isolates that carry blaCMY-2 or blaCMY-69 and investigated the inactivation kinetics of CMY-2. Our analysis showed that CMY-2-containing clinical isolates of E. coli were highly susceptible to ceftazidime-avibactam (MIC90, ≤0.5 mg/liter); in comparison, ceftazidime had a MIC90 of >128 mg/liter. More importantly, avibactam was an extremely potent inhibitor of CMY-2 β-lactamase, as demonstrated by a second-order onset of acylation rate constant (k2/K) of (4.9 ± 0.5) × 104 M−1 s−1 and the off-rate constant (koff) of (3.7 ± 0.4) ×10−4 s−1. Analysis of the reaction of avibactam with CMY-2 using mass spectrometry to capture reaction intermediates revealed that the CMY-2–avibactam acyl-enzyme complex was stable for as long as 24 h. Molecular modeling studies raise the hypothesis that a series of successive hydrogen-bonding interactions occur as avibactam proceeds through the reaction coordinate with CMY-2 (e.g., T316, G317, S318, T319, S343, N346, and R349). Our findings support the microbiological and biochemical efficacy of ceftazidime-avibactam against E. coli containing plasmid-borne CMY-2 and CMY-69.


Research reported in this publication was also supported by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases of the National Institutes of Health under award numbers R01AI100560 and R01AI063517 to R.A.B. M.L.W. has been supported by a Medical Scientist Training Program training grant, Case Western Reserve University-T32 GM07250.