An enzyme that catalyzes the acetylation of chloramphenicol to yield chloramphenicol 3-acetate. Since chloramphenicol 3-acetate does not bind to bacterial ribosomes and is not an inhibitor of peptidyltransferase, the enzyme is responsible for the naturally occurring chloramphenicol resistance in bacteria. The enzyme, for which variants are known, is found in both gram-negative and gram-positive bacteria. EC