Genomic characterization of a paediatric MRSA outbreak by next-generation sequencing

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Introduction: Twelve strains of meticillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) isolated during a suspected outbreak in a paediatric intensive care unit were analysed by whole-genome sequencing (WGS). Aim: To define the clonality of MRSA strains to a high discriminative power, and to evaluate the presence of genetic determinants responsible for antibiotic resistance and virulence. Results: Ten out of 12 strains belonged to multi-locus sequence type ST2625, while the other two strains were ST8. Among the ST2625 strains, analysis based on 1126 genes showed that they were clonal, sharing more than 98.3% of allelic identities, and one strain was isolated from a healthcare worker. All ST2625 strains were characterized by the SCC-Mec cassette IVa, and resistoma analysis indicated correspondence between phenotypic and genotypic characteristics. The study of 63 genes associated with virulence was correlated with the pattern of clonality shown. Conclusion: This analysis confirmed the occurrence of an outbreak. As such, standard infection control measures were strictly enforced, and this led to prompt termination of the outbreak.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)155-160
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Hospital Infection
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Feb 1 2018


  • MRSA
  • Paediatric nosocomial infections
  • Resistoma
  • Staphylococcus aureus
  • Toxoma
  • Whole-genome sequencing

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology (medical)
  • Infectious Diseases


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