The antibiotic sensitivity patterns and plasmid DNA content of gram-negative anaerobic bacteria isolated in Palmerston North, New Zealand : a thesis presented in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Masters in Science at Massey University
One hundred and seven Gram-negative bacteria, including 65 Bacteroides species, 28 fusobacteria and
14 veillonellae were isolated from 17 oral infections treated in two dental surgeries in Palmerston North. These bacteria, plus 37 isolates belonging to the
B. fragilis group received from Palmerston North hospital, were surveyed for their antibiotic sensitivity levels, and their plasmid DNA content.
The hospital isolates of the B. fragilis group were found to have sensitivity levels comparable
with those of B. fragilis group isolates reported in the literature recently. The oral isolates were more sensitive to penicillin, cefoxitin, and tetracycline than isolates of the same species reported in the literature.
Half the hospital isolates had plasmids, which were all between 8.5 and 2.7 kilobases (kb) in size except for one 60, and one 43 kb plasmid. Comparatively few of the oral anaerobes had plasmids. One Fusobacterium russii isolate had four plasmids, and five Bacteroides
isolates had one plasmid each. These five Bacteroides isolates came from two specimens, R5 and R6.
Restriction enzyme analysis of all plasmids revealed that the three 5.6 kb plasmids from sample R5 may be related to a group of 5.8 kb plasmids harboured by four of the hospital isolates. Two different
species of Bacteroides isolated from sample R5 harboured the 5.6 kb plasmid, and two species of the B. fragilis group bacteria harboured the 5.8 kb plasmid.
Plasmid DNA isolated from two tetracycline resistant hospital isolates was used to transform restriction negative E. coli to a low level of tetracycline resistance.