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Molecular Epidemiology of Staphylococcus epidermidis Implicated in Catheter-Related Bloodstream Infections at an Academic Hospital in Pretoria, South Africa

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      Staphylococcus epidermidis is one of the most prevalent pathogens implicated in catheter-related bloodstream infections (CRBSI) at an academic hospital in Pretoria, South Africa. Little is known about the clonality and the prevalence of antibiotic resistance and virulence genes in S. epidermidis (e.g., icaAB, IS 256, mecA, and qacA/B). A total of 508 intravascular catheters (IVCs) from 331 patients were submitted for culture from May to October 2013. Only 50% ( n = 253/508) of the IVCs were accompanied by blood cultures (BCs) taken within 48 h. Forty-four percent (44%; n = 112/253) of IVCs were colonised, of which 26% ( n = 65/253) were associated with a CRBSI. We identified S. epidermidis as the causal agent in 31% ( n = 20/65) of the CRBSI cases. Fifty-nine S. epidermidis isolates were obtained, 23 isolates were cultured from 22 IVCs and 36 isolates were cultured from 36 BCs. All S. epidermidis isolates were resistant to β-lactams (100%; n = 59/59), followed by high levels of resistance toward erythromycin (86%; n = 51/59) and gentamicin (81%; n = 49/59). The mecA gene was prevalent in all the (100%, n = 59/59) isolates. Isolates contained the IS 256 element (83%, n = 49/59), the icaAB gene (81%, n = 48/59) and, the qacA/B gene (81%, n = 48/59). All 48 isolates were qacA positive upon restriction enzyme digestion of the qacA/B amplicons. Phenotypic resistance toward 0.5% (m/v) chlorhexidine was not observed. Staphylococcal Cassette Chromosome (SCC) mec typing showed that SCC mec type IV (31%; n = 18/59) was the most prevalent. The remaining SCC mec elements were highly diverse. Pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) showed that S. epidermidis isolates from individual patients were mostly clonal. Multilocus sequencing typing (MLST) of 10 sequenced isolates showed that sequence type (ST) 2 (40%; n = 4/10) was the most frequently detected, followed by ST54 (20%; n = 2/10), ST28 (10%; n = 1/10), ST59 (10%; n = 1/10) and ST490 (10%; 1/10). One isolate was newly assigned to ST596. These S. epidermidis infections can be attributed to patients' skin microflora or to poor infection control practices. Currently, S. epidermidis strains circulating in the studied hospital are multidrug-resistant and highly adaptive to environmental changes.

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          Pulsed-field gel electrophoresis typing of oxacillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus isolates from the United States: establishing a national database.

          Oxacillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (ORSA) is a virulent pathogen responsible for both health care-associated and community onset disease. We used SmaI-digested genomic DNA separated by pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) to characterize 957 S. aureus isolates and establish a database of PFGE patterns. In addition to PFGE patterns of U.S. strains, the database contains patterns of representative epidemic-type strains from the United Kingdom, Canada, and Australia; previously described ORSA clonal-type isolates; 13 vancomycin-intermediate S. aureus (VISA) isolates, and two high-level vancomycin-resistant, vanA-positive strains (VRSA). Among the isolates from the United States, we identified eight lineages, designated as pulsed-field types (PFTs) USA100 through USA800, seven of which included both ORSA and oxacillin-susceptible S. aureus isolates. With the exception of the PFT pairs USA100 and USA800, and USA300 and USA500, each of the PFTs had a unique multilocus sequence type and spa type motif. The USA100 PFT, previously designated as the New York/Tokyo clone, was the most common PFT in the database, representing 44% of the ORSA isolates. USA100 isolates were typically multiresistant and included all but one of the U.S. VISA strains and both VRSA isolates. Multiresistant ORSA isolates from the USA200, -500, and -600 PFTs have PFGE patterns similar to those of previously described epidemic strains from Europe and Australia. The USA300 and -400 PFTs contained community isolates resistant only to beta-lactam drugs and erythromycin. Noticeably absent from the U.S. database were isolates with the previously described Brazilian and EMRSA15 PFGE patterns. These data suggest that there are a limited number of ORSA genotypes present in the United States.

            Author and article information

            1Department of Medical Microbiology, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Pretoria , Pretoria, South Africa
            2National Health Laboratory Service, Tshwane Academic Division , Pretoria, South Africa
            3Department of Internal Medicine, University of Pretoria , Pretoria, South Africa
            Author notes

            Edited by: Awdhesh Kalia, University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, United States

            Reviewed by: Yajun Song, Beijing Institute of Microbiology and Epidemiology, China; Ariadnna Cruz-Córdova, Hospital Infantil de México Federico Gómez, Mexico

            *Correspondence: Marthie M. Ehlers marthie.ehlers@

            This article was submitted to Infectious Diseases, a section of the journal Frontiers in Microbiology

            Front Microbiol
            Front Microbiol
            Front. Microbiol.
            Frontiers in Microbiology
            Frontiers Media S.A.
            07 March 2018
            : 9
            5845871 10.3389/fmicb.2018.00417
            Copyright © 2018 Ehlers, Strasheim, Lowe, Ueckermann and Kock.

            This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

            Figures: 3, Tables: 1, Equations: 0, References: 43, Pages: 11, Words: 7830
            Funded by: University of Pretoria 10.13039/501100001343
            Original Research


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