Genetic determinants of antibiotic resistance evolution

Lukacisinova M. 2018. Genetic determinants of antibiotic resistance evolution. IST Austria.

OA 2018_Thesis_Lukacisinova.pdf 5.66 MB

Thesis | Published | English
Series Title
IST Austria Thesis
Antibiotic resistance can emerge spontaneously through genomic mutation and render treatment ineffective. To counteract this process, in addition to the discovery and description of resistance mechanisms,a deeper understanding of resistanceevolvabilityand its determinantsis needed. To address this challenge, this thesisuncoversnew genetic determinants of resistance evolvability using a customized robotic setup, exploressystematic ways in which resistance evolution is perturbed due to dose-responsecharacteristics of drugs and mutation rate differences,and mathematically investigates the evolutionary fate of one specific type of evolvability modifier -a stress-induced mutagenesis allele.We find severalgenes which strongly inhibit or potentiate resistance evolution. In order to identify them, we first developedan automated high-throughput feedback-controlled protocol whichkeeps the population size and selection pressure approximately constant for hundreds of cultures by dynamically re-diluting the cultures and adjusting the antibiotic concentration. We implementedthis protocol on a customized liquid handling robot and propagated 100 different gene deletion strains of Escherichia coliin triplicate for over 100 generations in tetracycline and in chloramphenicol, and comparedtheir adaptation rates.We find a diminishing returns pattern, where initially sensitive strains adapted more compared to less sensitive ones. Our data uncover that deletions of certain genes which do not affect mutation rate,including efflux pump components, a chaperone and severalstructural and regulatory genes can strongly and reproducibly alterresistance evolution. Sequencing analysis of evolved populations indicates that epistasis with resistance mutations is the most likelyexplanation. This work could inspire treatment strategies in which targeted inhibitors of evolvability mechanisms will be given alongside antibiotics to slow down resistance evolution and extend theefficacy of antibiotics.We implemented astochasticpopulation genetics model, toverifyways in which general properties, namely, dose-response characteristics of drugs and mutation rates, influence evolutionary dynamics. In particular, under the exposure to antibiotics with shallow dose-response curves,bacteria have narrower distributions of fitness effects of new mutations. We show that in silicothis also leads to slower resistance evolution. We see and confirm with experiments that increased mutation rates, apart from speeding up evolution, also leadto high reproducibility of phenotypic adaptation in a context of continually strong selection pressure.Knowledge of these patterns can aid in predicting the dynamics of antibiotic resistance evolutionand adapting treatment schemes accordingly.Focusing on a previously described type of evolvability modifier –a stress-induced mutagenesis allele –we find conditions under which it can persist in a population under periodic selectionakin to clinical treatment. We set up a deterministic infinite populationcontinuous time model tracking the frequencies of a mutator and resistance allele and evaluate various treatment schemes in how well they maintain a stress-induced mutator allele. In particular,a high diversity of stresses is crucial for the persistence of the mutator allele. This leads to a general trade-off where exactly those diversifying treatment schemes which are likely to decrease levels of resistance could lead to stronger selection of highly evolvable genotypes.In the long run, this work will lead to a deeper understanding of the genetic and cellular mechanisms involved in antibiotic resistance evolution and could inspire new strategies for slowing down its rate.
Publishing Year
Date Published

Cite this

Lukacisinova M. Genetic determinants of antibiotic resistance evolution. 2018. doi:10.15479/AT:ISTA:th1072
Lukacisinova, M. (2018). Genetic determinants of antibiotic resistance evolution. IST Austria.
Lukacisinova, Marta. “Genetic Determinants of Antibiotic Resistance Evolution.” IST Austria, 2018.
M. Lukacisinova, “Genetic determinants of antibiotic resistance evolution,” IST Austria, 2018.
Lukacisinova M. 2018. Genetic determinants of antibiotic resistance evolution. IST Austria.
Lukacisinova, Marta. Genetic Determinants of Antibiotic Resistance Evolution. IST Austria, 2018, doi:10.15479/AT:ISTA:th1072.
All files available under the following license(s):
Copyright Statement:
This Item is protected by copyright and/or related rights. [...]
Main File(s)
Access Level
OA Open Access
Date Uploaded
Embargo End Date
MD5 Checksum

Source File
Access Level
Restricted Closed Access
Date Uploaded
MD5 Checksum


Marked Publications

Open Data ISTA Research Explorer

Search this title in

Google Scholar