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Infectious Diseases - Microbiology - Non-Clinical Medicine - Virology

The Ability of Virulence Factor Expression by Pseudomonas aeruginosa to Predict Clinical Disease in Hospitalized Patients
Published: Monday, November 12, 2012
Author: Michel Ledizet et al.

by Michel Ledizet, Thomas S. Murray, Sailaja Puttagunta, Martin D. Slade, Vincent J. Quagliarello, Barbara I. Kazmierczak


Pseudomonas aeruginosa is an opportunistic pathogen that frequently causes hospital acquired colonization and infection. Accurate identification of host and bacterial factors associated with infection could aid treatment decisions for patients with P. aeruginosa cultured from clinical sites.


We identified a prospective cohort of 248 hospitalized patients with positive P. aeruginosa cultures. Clinical data were analyzed to determine whether an individual met predefined criteria for infection versus colonization. P. aeruginosa isolates were tested for the expression of multiple phenotypes previously associated with virulence in animal models and humans. Logistic regression models were constructed to determine the degree of association between host and bacterial factors with P. aeruginosa infection of the bloodstream, lung, soft tissue and urinary tract.


One host factor (i.e. diabetes mellitus), and one bacterial factor, a Type 3 secretion system positive phenotype, were significantly associated with P. aeruginosa infection in our cohort. Subgroup analysis of patients with P. aeruginosa isolated from the urinary tract revealed that the presence of a urinary tract catheter or stent was an additional factor for P. aeruginosa infection.


Among hospitalized patients with culture-documented P. aeruginosa, infection is more likely to be present in those with diabetes mellitus and those harboring a Type 3 secretion positive bacterial strain.