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ISME J. 2007 Jul;1(3):265-8. Epub 2007 May 31.

Public computer surfaces are reservoirs for methicillin-resistant staphylococci.

Author information

1
Laboratory for Microbial Ecology, Department of Environmental Sciences, University of Toledo, Toledo, OH 43606, USA.

Abstract

The role of computer keyboards used by students of a metropolitan university as reservoirs of antibiotic-resistant staphylococci was determined. Putative methicillin (oxacillin)-resistant staphylococci isolates were identified from keyboard swabs following a combination of biochemical and genetic analyses. Of 24 keyboards surveyed, 17 were contaminated with staphylococci that grew in the presence of oxacillin (2 mg l(-1)). Methicillin (oxacillin)-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), -S. epidermidis (MRSE) and -S. hominis (MRSH) were present on two, five and two keyboards, respectively, while all three staphylococci co-contaminated one keyboard. Furthermore, these were found to be part of a greater community of oxacillin-resistant bacteria. Combined with the broad user base common to public computers, the presence of antibiotic-resistant staphylococci on keyboard surfaces might impact the transmission and prevalence of pathogens throughout the community.

PMID:
18043636
DOI:
10.1038/ismej.2007.36
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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