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J Clin Microbiol. 2012 Aug;50(8):2553-60. doi: 10.1128/JCM.06810-11. Epub 2012 May 16.

Molecular epidemiologic analysis and antimicrobial resistance of Helicobacter cinaedi isolated from seven hospitals in Japan.

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Department of Bacteriology II, National Institute of Infectious Diseases, Tokyo, Japan.


Helicobacter cinaedi colonizes the colons of human and animals and can cause colitis, cellulitis, and sepsis in humans, with infections in immunocompromised patients being increasingly recognized. However, methods for analyzing the molecular epidemiology of H. cinaedi are not yet established. A genotyping method involving multilocus sequence typing (MLST) was developed and used to analyze 50 H. cinaedi isolates from Japanese hospitals in addition to 6 reference strains. Pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) results were also compared with the MLST results. Based on the genomic information from strain CCUG18818, 21 housekeeping genes were selected as candidates for MLST and were observed to have high homology (96.5 to 100%) between isolates. Following a comparison of the 21 housekeeping genes from 8 H. cinaedi isolates, 7 genes were chosen for MLST, revealing 14 sequence types (STs). The isolates from 3 hospitals belonged to the same STs, but the isolates from the other 4 hospitals belonged to different STs. Isolates belonging to ST6 were analyzed by PFGE and showed similar, but not identical, patterns between isolates. Isolates belonging to ST9, ST10, and ST11, which belonged to the same clonal complex, had the same pattern. All isolates were found to contain mutations in GyrA and the 23S rRNA gene that confer ciprofloxacin and clarithromycin resistance, respectively, in H. cinaedi. These results raise concerns about the increase in H. cinaedi isolates resistant to clarithromycin and ciprofloxacin in Japan.

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