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Emerg Infect Dis. 2005 Jun;11(6):844-50.

Community-associated methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, Canada.

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National Microbiology Laboratory, Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada.


A total of 184 methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) strains were collected from patients who sought treatment primarily for skin and soft tissue infections from January 1, 1999, to March 31, 2002, in east-central Saskatchewan, Canada. Molecular subtyping analysis using pulsed-field gel electrophoresis showed 2 major clusters. Cluster A (n = 55) was composed of a multidrug-resistant MRSA strain associated with a long-term care facility and was similar to the previously reported nosocomial Canadian epidemic strain labeled CMRSA-2. Cluster B (n = 125) was associated with cases identified at community health centers and was indistinguishable from a community-associated (CA)-MRSA strain identified previously in the United States (USA400). Cluster B remained susceptible to a number of classes of antimicrobial agents and harbored the lukF-PV and lukS-PV toxin genes. Over 50% of both clonal groups displayed high-level resistance to mupirocin. This is the first report of the USA400 strain harboring the lukF-PV and lukS-PV toxin genes in Canada.

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