Clostridioides difficile infection (CDI) remains a significant healthcare burden. Non-toxigenic C. difficile (NTCD) strains have shown a benefit in preventing porcine enteritis and in human recurrent CDI. In this study, we evaluated the efficacy of metronidazole-resistant NTCD-E4 in preventing CDI facilitated by a range of antimicrobials in an in vitro human gut model. NTCD-E4 spores (at a dose of 107) were instilled 7 days before a clinical ribotype (RT) 027 (at the same dose) strain (210). In separate experiments, four different antimicrobials were used to perturb gut microbiotas; bacterial populations and cytotoxin production were determined using viable counting and Vero cell cytotoxicity, respectively. RT027 and NTCD-E4 proliferated in the in vitro model when inoculated singly, with RT027 demonstrating high-level cytotoxin (3-5-log10-relative units) production. In experiments where the gut model was pre-inoculated with NTCD-E4, RT027 was remained quiescent and failed to produce cytotoxins. NTCD-E4 showed mutations in hsmA and a gene homologous to CD196-1331, previously linked to medium-dependent metronidazole resistance, but lacked other metronidazole resistance determinants. This study showed that RT027 was unable to elicit simulated infection in the presence of NTCD-E4 following stimulation by four different antimicrobials. These data complement animal and clinical studies in suggesting NTCD offer prophylactic potential in the management of human CDI.
|Number of pages||15|
|Early online date||22 Feb 2023|
|Publication status||E-pub ahead of print - 22 Feb 2023|
- Clostridioides difficile
- gut model