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      High diversity in SCCmec elements among multidrug-resistant Staphylococcus haemolyticus strains originating from paediatric patients; characterization of a new composite island

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          Coagulase-negative staphylococci.

          The definition of the heterogeneous group of coagulase-negative staphylococci (CoNS) is still based on diagnostic procedures that fulfill the clinical need to differentiate between Staphylococcus aureus and those staphylococci classified historically as being less or nonpathogenic. Due to patient- and procedure-related changes, CoNS now represent one of the major nosocomial pathogens, with S. epidermidis and S. haemolyticus being the most significant species. They account substantially for foreign body-related infections and infections in preterm newborns. While S. saprophyticus has been associated with acute urethritis, S. lugdunensis has a unique status, in some aspects resembling S. aureus in causing infectious endocarditis. In addition to CoNS found as food-associated saprophytes, many other CoNS species colonize the skin and mucous membranes of humans and animals and are less frequently involved in clinically manifested infections. This blurred gradation in terms of pathogenicity is reflected by species- and strain-specific virulence factors and the development of different host-defending strategies. Clearly, CoNS possess fewer virulence properties than S. aureus, with a respectively different disease spectrum. In this regard, host susceptibility is much more important. Therapeutically, CoNS are challenging due to the large proportion of methicillin-resistant strains and increasing numbers of isolates with less susceptibility to glycopeptides.
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            Classification of staphylococcal cassette chromosome mec (SCCmec): guidelines for reporting novel SCCmec elements.

             Mark Enright (2009)
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              Novel type V staphylococcal cassette chromosome mec driven by a novel cassette chromosome recombinase, ccrC.

              Staphylococcal cassette chromosome mec (SCCmec) is a mobile genetic element composed of the mec gene complex, which encodes methicillin resistance, and the ccr gene complex, which encodes the recombinases responsible for its mobility. The mec gene complex has been classified into four classes, and the ccr gene complex has been classified into three allotypes. Different combinations of mec gene complex classes and ccr gene complex types have so far defined four types of SCCmec elements. Now we introduce the fifth allotype of SCCmec, which was found on the chromosome of a community-acquired methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus strain (strain WIS [WBG8318]) isolated in Australia. The element shared the same chromosomal integration site with the four extant types of SCCmec and the characteristic nucleotide sequences at the chromosome-SCCmec junction regions. The novel SCCmec carried mecA bracketed by IS431 (IS431-mecA-DeltamecR1-IS431), which is designated the class C2 mec gene complex; and instead of ccrA and ccrB genes, it carried a single copy of a gene homologue that encoded cassette chromosome recombinase. Since the open reading frame (ORF) was found to encode an enzyme which catalyzes the precise excision as well as site- and orientation-specific integration of the element, we designated the ORF cassette chromosome recombinase C (ccrC), and we designated the element type V SCCmec. Type V SCCmec is a small SCCmec element (28 kb) and does not carry any antibiotic resistance genes besides mecA. Unlike the extant SCCmec types, it carries a set of foreign genes encoding a restriction-modification system that might play a role in the stabilization of the element on the chromosome.
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                Journal of Medical Microbiology
                Microbiology Society
                0022-2615
                1473-5644
                July 01 2018
                July 01 2018
                : 67
                : 7
                : 915-921
                Affiliations
                [1 ] 1​Department of Innovative Molecular Diagnostics, University of Applied Sciences Leiden, Leiden, the Netherlands
                [2 ] 2​Department of Microbiology, School of Medicine, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran
                Article
                10.1099/jmm.0.000776
                © 2018

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