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JMM Case Rep. 2018 Oct 31;5(11):e005169. doi: 10.1099/jmmcr.0.005169. eCollection 2018 Nov.

Bacteraemia due to Microbacterium paraoxydans in a patient with chronic kidney disease, refractory hypertension and sarcoidosis.

Author information

Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, Bethesda, MD, USA.
Walter Reed Army Institute of Research, Silver Spring, MD, USA.



Microbacterium spp. are yellow-pigmented Gram-positive coryneform rods found in various environmental sources, such as soil and water samples. They rarely cause human infection, mostly infecting immunocompromised patients and catheter insertion sites, making them challenging to identify in clinical settings.

Case presentation:

We report a case of a 61-year-old female on long-term prednisone therapy for sarcoidosis with minimal exposure to environmental sources, who presented with an overtly infected Hickman catheter site and presyncope. The patient had a central venous catheter (CVC) that had been in place for the previous 6 years for treatment of refractory hypertension and congestive heart failure. Blood cultures obtained from the CVC on initial presentation were positive for a mixed infection, which was subcultured and grew Staphylococcus aureus, Staphylococcus epidermidis, Acinetobacter radioresistens and Leifsonia aquatica based on the Becton Dickinson Phoenix Automated Microbiology System. The L. aquatica, designated as isolate 4120, was further analysed, since infections associated with this organism are uncommon, and it was the only organism to grow from the patient's catheter tip. Matrix-assisted laser desorption ionization-time of flight MS identified isolate 4120 as Microbacterium paraoxydans. To resolve the conflicting results, additional analyses of isolate 4120 were carried out and compared to several reference strains. Isolate 4120 was found to have intermediate susceptibility to ciprofloxacin and non-susceptibility to vancomycin. Morphology, susceptibility, biochemical characteristics and whole-genome sequencing confirmed the clinical isolate as Microbacterium paraoxydans.


In this case, we identified an organism that is rarely seen in clinical settings and characterized it with a comprehensive laboratory analysis. The patient in our case responded to replacement of the CVC, and treatment with levofloxacin by mouth and intravenous vancomycin.


IV vancomycin; Microbacterium paraoxydans infection; PO levofloxacin; dizzy spells; erythema; tenderness and discharge

Conflict of interest statement

The authors declare that there are no conflicts of interest.

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