Recherche de nouvelles stratégies thérapeutiques pour le traitement de la tularémie : résistances bactériennes chez Francisella tularensis et développement de nouveaux antibiotiques bis-indoliques de synthèse

Abstract : Tularemia is a zoonosis caused by the highly pathogenic bacterium Francisella tularensis. The most virulent subspecies, F. tularensis subsp. tularensis, is found only in North America while the subspecies F. tularensis subsp. holarctica is present in the whole Northern hemisphere. In France, all strains belong to the biovar I of the subspecies holarctica and more specifically to the phylogenetic subclade B.FTNF002-00. Although tularemia is usually not a severe disease in France, many patients suffer from therapeutic failures despite receiving an appropriate treatment. These treatments failures are observed in up to 25% of patients treated with ciprofloxacin or gentamicin, and up to 35% if patients treated with doxycycline. The causes of those therapeutic failures remain poorly elucidated. Analysis of the literature and determination of the susceptibility of 59 French F. tularensis subsp. holarctica strains to 18 antibiotics confirmed that to date, no strain with acquired resistance to any of the first-line antibiotics used for treatment of tularemia have been isolated. The fluoroquinolones (in particular ciprofloxacin and levofloxacin) exhibit the lowest minimal inhibitory concentrations, compared to gentamicin and doxycycline. Data obtained in vitro and in animal models are concordant with human data concerning the efficacy of antibiotics and therapeutic failure rates. Thus, we advocate the use of ciprofloxacin as first-line treatment for mild form of tularemia, and the use of doxycyclin only as a second-line treatment in patients with contraindications to fluoroquinolones. Azithromycin and telithromycin may also be considered as potential therapeutic alternatives for tularemia cases caused by biovar I strains of the susbspecies holarctica, but only for patients with contraindications to first-line antibiotics. Further data in animal models are however required to consolidate our in vitro data. The in vitro selection of fluoroquinolone-resistant strains of F. tularensis has been reported. This suggests that the in vivo selection of such resistant mutants may occur. In vitro, the main fluoroquinolone resistance mutations occur in the gyrA and gyrB genes that encode type II topoisomerases of F. tularensis. We have characterized the functional impact of such mutations in avirulent F. novicida strains, taken as a surrogate of F. tularensis. Supercoiling and DNA cleavage activity of GyrA/GyrB complexes reconstituted in vitro have been determined in the presence of fluoroquinolones. Fluoroquinolone resistance level was the highest in strains with a D87G/D87Y mutation in the GyrA subunit or +P466 mutation in the GyrB subunit. The mutation P43H located outside the GyrA Quinolone-Resistance-Determining-Region (QRDR) confered significant but lower fluoroquinolone resistance. The mutation D487R-∆K488 also outside GyrB QRDR did not cause fluoroquinolone resistance by itself, but increased the resistance level in case of concomitant D87G mutation. No mutation could be identified in vivo in the QRDR of gyrA and gyrB genes amplified from clinical samples collected in patients treated with a fluoroquinolone, although some of them experienced therapeutic failure. Finally, while searching for new antibiotic compounds, we identified new synthetic bis-indolic derivatives with antibacterial activity. Lead compounds were only bacteriostatic against F. tularensis but bactericidal against staphylococci including against multi-drug-resistant Staphylococcus aureus. MIC90 were measured at 2mg/L for F. tularensis and S. aureus strains for the most active compound. However, many developments are still required to improve their solubility in water, decrease their plasma proteins binding and elucidate their original mechanism of action.
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Yvan Caspar. Recherche de nouvelles stratégies thérapeutiques pour le traitement de la tularémie : résistances bactériennes chez Francisella tularensis et développement de nouveaux antibiotiques bis-indoliques de synthèse. Virologie. Université Grenoble Alpes, 2017. Français. ⟨NNT : 2017GREAV028⟩. ⟨tel-02137367⟩

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