Conjugation of Virulence Plasmid in Clinical Klebsiella pneumoniae Strains through Formation of a Fusion Plasmid

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

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  • Kaichao Chen
  • Ning Dong
  • Edward Wai-Chi Chan
  • Qiaoling Sun
  • Lingbin Shu
  • Danxia Gu
  • Xiaodong Lin
  • Rong Zhang
  • Sheng Chen


Original languageEnglish
Article number1900239
Journal / PublicationAdvanced Biosystems
Issue number4
Online published13 Feb 2020
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2020


The rapid dissemination of non-conjugative virulence plasmids among non-K1/K2 types of Klebsiella pneumoniae poses an unprecedented threat to human health, yet the underlying mechanisms governing dissemination of such plasmids is unclear. In this study, a novel 68 581 bp IncFIA plasmid is discovered that can be fused to a hypervirulence-encoding plasmid to form a hybrid conjugative virulence plasmid in conjugation experiments; such fusion events involve homologous recombination between a 241 bp homologous region located in each of the two plasmids. The fusion hypervirulence-encoding plasmid can be conjugated to both classic and blaKPC-2-bearing carbapenem-resistant K. pneumoniae strains through conjugation, enabling such strains to acquire the ability to express the hypervirulence phenotype. Dissemination of this fusion virulence plasmid will impose an enormous burden on current efforts to control and treat infections caused by multidrug resistant and hypervirulent K. pneumoniae.

Research Area(s)

  • conjugative, CR-HvKP, hypervirulence plasmid, Klebsiella pneumoniae, transmission

Citation Format(s)