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Eur J Clin Microbiol Infect Dis. 2014 Nov;33(11):1967-71. doi: 10.1007/s10096-014-2169-9. Epub 2014 Jun 7.

Characterization of the staphylococcal cassette chromosome mec insertion site in 108 isolates lacking the mecA gene and identified as methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus by the Xpert MRSA assay.

Author information

1
Hospital Preventive Medicine Service, Centre Hospitalier Universitaire Vaudois, Lausanne, Switzerland, milos.stojanov@chuv.ch.

Abstract

During a 3-year period, 848 patients were detected as carriers of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) by the Xpert MRSA assay (Cepheid). Among them, 108 patients (12.7 %) were colonized with strains showing methicillin-susceptible phenotypes and absence of the mecA gene, despite being positive with the rapid polymerase chain reaction (PCR) assay. DNA sequences of the staphylococcal cassette chromosome mec (SCCmec) insertion site of these "false-positive" strains was determined by direct sequencing of the genomic DNA. More than half (53.7 %) of the strains had DNA sequences unrelated to either SCC or SCCmec and one-third had DNA sequences related to non-mec SCC. Only 10.2 % of the strains carried sequences related to SCCmec, suggesting that a sequence containing the mecA gene was lost from an SCCmec. These findings differ from the general idea that all methicillin-susceptible S. aureus having positive Xpert MRSA assay results are essentially MRSA that lost the mecA gene.

PMID:
24906440
DOI:
10.1007/s10096-014-2169-9
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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