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Research article - Peer-reviewed, 2004

Antimicrobial resistance in Brachyspira pilosicoli with special reference to point mutations in the 23S rRNA gene associated with macrolide and lincosamide resistance

Karlsson M, Fellstrom C, Johansson KE, Franklin A


A point mutation in the 23S rRNA gene causes macrolide and lincosamide resistance in Brachyspira hyodysenteriae. The possible occurrence of a similar mutation in Brachyspira pilosicoli was studied and the MICs of six antimicrobial agents for Swedish field isolates of B. pilosicoli were determined. Of 10 isolates with high MICs of macrolide and lincosamide antibiotics, six had a mutation in nucleotide position 2058 or 2059 in the 23S rRNA gene as compared to the wild type of Escherichia coli, whereas none of 10 tylosin-susceptible isolates were mutated in this region. The mutations found in position 2058 were A --> T transversions, and in position 2059 either A --> G transitions or A --> C transversions. The MICs at which 90% of the B. pilosicoli field isolates were inhibited by tylosin, erythromycin, clindamycin, virginiamycin, tiamulin, and carbadox, were >256, >256, >4, 4, 2, and 0.125 mug/ml, respectively. In conclusion, point mutations in positions 2058 and 2059 of the 23S rRNA gene can cause macrolide and lincosamide resistance in B. pilosicoli. Macrolide resistance is widespread among Swedish field isolates of B. pilosicoli. Notably also a few isolates with elevated MICs of tiamulin were found

Published in

Microbial Drug Resistance
2004, Volume: 10, number: 3, pages: 204-208