A. baumannii can cause a wide range of infections, including pneumonia, bloodstream infections, skin and soft tissue infections. It has evolved several properties that enable it to thrive and spread in healthcare settings, particularly high adherence to surfaces and the ability to survive in harsh environmental conditions.
A. baumannii is highly adept at acquiring new antibiotic resistance genes. Over recent decades, it has acquired resistance to multiple antibiotics, including carbapenems. It is one of the ‘ESKAPE’ pathogens, the most common multidrug-resistant bacteria, and is categorized by WHO as a ‘priority 1 (critical)’ pathogen for R&D of new antibiotics.