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J Bacteriol. 2009 Sep;191(18):5577-83. doi: 10.1128/JB.00493-09. Epub 2009 Jul 10.

Comparisons between geographically diverse samples of carried Staphylococcus aureus.

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Laboratoire Associé Centre National de Référence Résistance dans les Flores Commensales, Hôpital Bichat-Claude Bernard (AP-HP), 75018 Paris, France.


Approximately one-third of the human population is asymptomatically colonized by Staphylococcus aureus. However, much of the global diversity within the carriage populations remains uncharacterized, and it is unclear to what degree the variation is geographically partitioned. We isolated 300 carriage isolates from 1,531 adults contemporaneously in four countries: France, Algeria, Moldova, and Cambodia. All strains were characterized by multilocus sequence typing. Six clonal complexes (CCs) were present in all four samples (CC30, -45, -121, -15, -5, and -8). Analyses based on the genotype frequencies revealed the French and Algerian samples to be most similar and the Cambodian sample to be most distinct. While this pattern is consistent with likely rates of human migration and geographic distance, stochastic clonal expansion also contributes to regional differences. Phylogenetic analysis revealed a highly divergent and uncharacterized genotype (ST1223) within Cambodia. This lineage is related to CC75, which has previously been observed only in remote aboriginal populations in northern Australia.

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