Marta Carvalho*, Teresa Bento de Carvalho*, Joana Bastos Barbosa*, Paula Teixeira*, E. Bergogne-Bérézin

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingEntry for encyclopedia/dictionarypeer-review


Acinetobacter is a complex genus, comprising species recognized as opportunistic pathogens for patients with risk factors. Acinetobacter spp. have emerged as a major cause of nosocomial infections throughout the world in the last few decades. Although Acinetobacter spp. are mainly associated with hospital-acquired infections, these organisms are also responsible for community-acquired infections, which are associated with a relatively high mortality rate. The trend of some species (Acinetobacter baumannii and Acinetobacter calcoaceticus) to spread in hospital environment, to acquire and disseminate antibiotic resistance factors, even to the most recent and active antibiotics, has become a global threat to public health and an economic burden. Acinetobacter baumannii is on the World Health Organization's list of bacteria that urgently need new antibiotics. Digestive carriage is not predominant, contamination results from hand, material and patient carriage. Although the presence of Acinetobacter spp. in food has not been extensively analyzed and still appears to be limited, few reports suggest that food is a reservoir of antibiotic-resistant strains. Nevertheless, the presence of clinically important species and multidrug-resistant strains in foods may be a threat to public health, being vectors for the spread of these opportunistic pathogens into both community and hospital settings environment. Acinetobacter spp. represent a threat to the future in specific conditions of poor hygiene, floods, wars, and all world disasters. On the other hand, they form a group of “cleaning bacteria,” capable of degrading a large number of aromatic compounds and toxins like ochratoxin A.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationEncyclopedia of food safety
EditorsGeoffrey W. Smithers
Number of pages10
ISBN (Print)9780128225202
Publication statusPublished - 2024


Dive into the research topics of 'Acinetobacter'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this