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Characterisation of nasal methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus isolated from international human and veterinary surgeons
- Authors: Virginia Post1, llinos Harris2, Mario Morgenstern3, R Geoff Richards4, Samuel K Sheppard5, Fintan Moriarty6
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1 1AO Research Institute Davos 2 2Swansea University Medical School 3 3Department of Trauma-Surgery, Trauma Centre Murnau, Murnau, Germany 4 4AO Research Institute Davos 5 5Swansea University Medical School, 6 6AO Research Institute Davos
- First Published Online: 21 December 2016, Journal of Medical Microbiology doi: 10.1099/jmm.0.000415
- Issue Published:
Nasal colonization with methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus is poorly described for surgeons, despite the increased exposure to nosocomial pathogens and at-risk patients. This study investigated the molecular epidemiology and antimicrobial resistance of 26 MRSA isolates cultured from the nares of an international cross-sectional study of 1,166 human and 60 veterinary surgeons. All isolates were subjected to agr-, spa- and MLST typing and the presence of 22 virulence factors were screened for by PCR. Additionally, biofilm-forming ability, haemolytic activity, staphyloxanthin production and antibiotic resistance were determined. The genome of a rifampicin resistant MRSA was sequenced. Approximately half of the isolates belonged to well-described clonal lineages, ST1, ST5, ST8, ST45 and ST59, that have been previously associated with severe infections and increased patient mortality. Two of the 3 veterinarian MRSA belonged to epidemic livestock-associated MRSA clonal lineages (ST398 and ST8) previously associated with high transmission potential between animals and humans. The isolates did not display any consistent virulence gene pattern, and 35% of the isolates carried at least one of: the Panton-Valentine leukocidin lukFS-PV; the exfoliative toxin eta; or the toxic shock syndrome tst genes. Resistance to rifampicin was detected in one veterinarian isolate, and was found to be due to 3 mutations in the rpoB gene. Surgeons occupy a critical position in the healthcare profession due to their close contact with patients. In this study, surgeons were found to be colonized with MRSA at low rates that are similar to the general population, and the colonising strains were often common clonal lineages.
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