1998 Volume 21 Issue 4 Pages 326-329
Escherichia coli BM2506 is highly resistant to macrolide antibiotics; it produces macrolide 2'-phosphotransferase II [MPH(2')II] which inactivates such drugs. We investigated the localization and the transfer of the macrolide-resistance determinant that encoded the mphB gene for MPH(2')II in strain BM2506. Although we detected no clear band of plasmid DNA after agarose gel electrophoresis, transformation analysis using satellite DNA that corresponded to plasmid DNA after CsCl-ethidium bromide gradient centrifugation and restriction analysis of plasmid DNA in transformants showed that strain BM2506 harbored two plasmids, pTZ3721 (84kb) and pTZ3723 (24kb), that specified resistance to macrolides, ampicillin, streptomycin, tetracycline and sulfonamide and to macrolides and ampicillin, respectively. Southern hybridization showed that the mphB gene hybridized to both plasmids. Furthermore, pTZ3721 was transferred by conjugation to another strain of E. coli and pTZ3723 was mobilized with a self-transferable plasmid RP1 to other strains of E. coli. Therefore, it appears that the mphB gene is located on two plasmids in BM2506 and can be transferred to other strains of E. coli by conjugation or mobilization.