Functional and phylogenetic analysis of TetX variants to design a new classification system

Qipeng Cheng, Yanchu Cheung, Chenyu Liu, Edward Wai Chi Chan, Kwok Yin Wong, Rong Zhang, Sheng Chen

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


Recently, many TetX variants such as Tet(X3~14) were reported to confer resistance to tigecycline which is a last-resort antibiotic used to treat infections caused by multidrug-resistant bacteria. In this study, we identified essential residues including 329, 339, 340, 350, and 351 in TetX variants that mediated the evolution of the tigecycline-inactive Tet(X2) enzyme to the active forms of Tet(X3) and Tet(X4). Based on their amino acid sequences and functional features, we classified TetX variants into TetX-A class, TetX-B class and TetX-C class. We further found that TetX-A class variants originated from Bacteroidetes, with some variants further evolving to TetX-C class and acquired by Enterobacteriaceae. On the other hand, our data showed that some variants genes belonging to TetX-A class evolved directly to TetX-B class, which was further transmitted to Acinetobacter spp. This new classification system may facilitate better clinical management of patients infected by TetX-producing strains.

Original languageEnglish
Article number522
JournalCommunications Biology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - May 2022

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • General Biochemistry,Genetics and Molecular Biology
  • General Agricultural and Biological Sciences


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