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Abstract
The rise of antibiotic resistance (AMR) is one of the most important public health threats worldwide.Today, increasing attention is being paid to multidrug resistant staphylococci isolated from healthcare and non-healthcare environments as the treatment of these bacteria has become increasingly difficult. In this study, we compared staphylococci isolates recovered from high frequency touched surfaces from public areas in the community and hospitals in East and West London. 281 out of 600 (46.83%) staphylococci isolates recovered were multidrug resistant, of which 49 (8.17%) were mecA positive. There was significantly higher proportion of multidrug resistant staphylococci (Pā€‰=ā€‰0.0002) in East London (56.7%) compared to West London (49.96%). The most common species identified as multidrug resistant were S. epidermidis, S. haemolyticus and S. hominis, whereas penicillin, fusidic acid and erythromycin were the most frequent antibiotics the isolates were resistant to. Whole genome sequenced of mecA positive isolates revealed that S. sciuri isolates carried the mecA1 gene, which has only 84.43% homology with mecA. In addition, other frequently identified resistance genes included blaZ, qacA/B and dfrC. We have also identified a diverse range of SCCmec types, many of which were untypable due to carrying a novel combination of ccr genes or multiple ccr complexes.
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