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MBio. 2012 Apr 17;3(2):e00082-12. doi: 10.1128/mBio.00082-12. Print 2012.

Human origin for livestock-associated methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus.

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  • 1The Roslin Institute and Edinburgh Infectious Diseases, Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies, University of Edinburgh, Easter Bush Campus, Edinburgh, United Kingdom.


Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) is a major cause of human morbidity and mortality worldwide. The emergence in the last decade of a livestock-associated MRSA (LA-MRSA) clone which also has the capacity to cause zoonotic infections in humans has raised important questions regarding its origin and its potential to cause human epidemics. An important study by L. B. Price et al. [mBio 3(1):e00305-11, 2012] provides evidence for a human ancestral origin for LA-MRSA, raising concerns about agricultural practices that may have contributed to its emergence and expansion. The study highlights the potential for comparative whole-genome sequencing of closely related strains to provide valuable insights into the evolutionary history of bacterial pathogens.

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