Rapid evolution and spread of carbapenemases among Enterobacteriaceae in Europe

R. Cantón, M. Akóva, Y. Carmeli, C. G. Giske, Y. Glupczynski, M. Gniadkowski, D. M. Livermore, V. Miriagou, T. Naas, G. M. Rossolini, Samuelsen, H. Seifert, N. Woodford, P. Nordmann, L. Poirel, P. Bogaerts, S. Navon-Venezia, G. Cornaglia

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

715 Scopus citations


Plasmid-acquired carbapenemases in Enterobacteriaceae, which were first discovered in Europe in the 1990s, are now increasingly being identified at an alarming rate. Although their hydrolysis spectrum may vary, they hydrolyse most β-lactams, including carbapenems. They are mostly of the KPC, VIM, NDM and OXA-48 types. Their prevalence in Europe as reported in 2011 varies significantly from high (Greece and Italy) to low (Nordic countries). The types of carbapenemase vary among countries, partially depending on the cultural/population exchange relationship between the European countries and the possible reservoirs of each carbapenemase. Carbapenemase producers are mainly identified among Klebsiella pneumoniae and Escherichia coli, and still mostly in hospital settings and rarely in the community. Although important nosocomial outbreaks with carbapenemase-producing Enterobacteriaceae have been extensively reported, many new cases are still related to importation from a foreign country. Rapid identification of colonized or infected patients and screening of carriers is possible, and will probably be effective for prevention of a scenario of endemicity, as now reported for extended-spectrum β-lactamase (mainly CTX-M) producers in all European countries.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)413-431
Number of pages19
JournalClinical Microbiology and Infection
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2012


  • Carbapenemases
  • Cross-border transmission
  • Enterobacteriaceae
  • Europe
  • Extended-spectrum β-lactamases
  • Polyclonal spread


Dive into the research topics of 'Rapid evolution and spread of carbapenemases among Enterobacteriaceae in Europe'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this