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Diagn Microbiol Infect Dis. 2002 Mar;42(3):199-203.

Molecular epidemiology and antimicrobial susceptibility of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus in Taiwan.

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Section of Infectious diseases, Department of Internal Medicine, National Taiwan University Hospital, Taipei, Taiwan.


Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) has become an important nosocomial pathogen and has increased frequency in the past 20 years. It is highly transmissible between wards, hospitals, and cities. In most major hospitals in Taiwan, MRSA accounts for more than 60% of the S. aureus isolates. Whether there is a predominant strain, which is spread over the whole of Taiwan has not yet been studied. We collected 208 sequential clinical isolates of MRSA from 22 hospitals: seven in northern Taiwan, seven in western Taiwan, five in southern Taiwan, and three in eastern Taiwan during a three-month period in 1998. Using pulsed-field gel electrophoresis, 112 MRSA isolates were shown to belong to one major type,--type C, and this type was shown to have spread widely across all of Taiwan. Ninety-six isolates belonged to 20 other minor types. Most MRSA isolates of this major type were multi-drug resistant and only susceptible to vancomycin and rifampin. We concluded that the high prevalence of MRSA in Taiwan was partly due to the spreading of a predominant strain and most of them were multi-drug resistant. This might imply that more effort should be made to control the spread of MRSA in Taiwan.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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