by Edgar Kigozi, George W. Kasule, Kenneth Musisi, Deus Lukoye, Samuel Kyobe, Fred Ashaba Katabazi, Eddie M. Wampande, Moses L. Joloba, David Patrick Kateete Background Accurate diagnosis of tuberculosis, especially by using rapid molecular assays, can reduce transmission of drug resistant tuberculosis in communities. However, the frequency of resistance conferring mutations varies with geographic location of Mycobacterium tuberculosis , and this affects the efficiency of rapid molecular assays in detecting resistance. This has created need for characterizing drug resistant isolates from different settings to investigate frequencies of resistance conferring mutations. Here, we describe the prevalence and patterns of rifampicin- and isoniazid- resistance conferring mutations in isolates from Uganda, which could be useful in the management of MDR-TB patients in Uganda and other countries in sub-Saharan Africa. Results Ninety seven M . tuberculosis isolates were characterized, of which 38 were MDR, seven rifampicin-resistant, 12 isoniazid-mono-resistant, and 40 susceptible to rifampicin and isoniazid. Sequence analysis of the rpoB rifampicin-resistance determining region ( rpoB /RRDR) revealed mutations in six codons: 588, 531, 526, 516, 513, and 511, of which Ser531Leu was the most frequent (40%, 18/45). Overall, the three mutations (Ser531Leu, His526Tyr, Asp516Tyr) frequently associated with rifampicin-resistance occurred in 76% of the rifampicin resistant isolates while 18% (8/45) of the rifampicin-resistant isolates lacked mutations in rpoB /RRDR. Furthermore, sequence analysis of katG and inhA gene promoter revealed mainly the Ser315Thr (76%, 38/50) and C(-15)T (8%, 4/50) mutations, respectively. These two mutations combined, which are frequently associated with isoniazid-resistance, occurred in 88% of the isoniazid resistant isolates. However, 20% (10/50) of the isoniazid-resistant isolates lacked mutations both in katG and inhA gene promoter. The sensitivity of sequence analysis of rpoB /RRDR for rifampicin-resistance via detection of high confidence mutations (Ser531Leu, His526Tyr, Asp516Tyr) was 81%, while it was 77% for analysis of katG and inhA gene promoter to detect isoniazid-resistance via detection of high confidence mutations (Ser315Thr, C(-15)T, T(-8)C). Furthermore, considering the circulating TB genotypes in Uganda, the isoniazid-resistance conferring mutations were more frequent in M . tuberculosis lineage 4/sub-lineage Uganda, perhaps explaining why this genotype is weakly associated with MDR-TB. Conclusion Sequence analysis of rpoB /RRDR, katG and inhA gene promoter is useful in detecting rifampicin/isoniazid resistant M . tuberculosis isolates in Uganda however, about ≤20% of the resistant isolates lack known resistance-conferring mutations hence rapid molecular assays may not detect them as resistant.
Natural Sciences in General