Section 41
Chapter 40,211

Genomic DNA fingerprinting by pulsed-field gel electrophoresis as an epidemiological marker for study of nosocomial infections caused by methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus

Ichiyama, S.; Ohta, M.; Shimokata, K.; Kato, N.; Takeuchi, J.

Journal of Clinical Microbiology 29(12): 2690-2695


ISSN/ISBN: 0095-1137
PMID: 1757534
Accession: 040210275

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In this study, we have compared genomic DNA fingerprintings among isolates of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) by using pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE). Chromosomal fragments digested with SmaI were most suitable for the PFGE separation. SmaI cut genomic DNA into 15 to 20 fragments whose sizes ranged from about 30 to 1,500 kb. Thirty-one distinctive fragment patterns were identified in 111 infecting and colonizing MRSA isolates from six different hospitals in Japan. On the basis of the genomic typing by PFGE, we performed an epidemiological investigation of an outbreak of nosocomial MRSA infections among inpatients in Nagoya University Hospital. Ten types of chromosomal digestion were identified in the 20 strains isolated from 18 infected patients and 1 from colonized hospital personnel. According to the restriction patterns, we found that four types of these strains had caused epidemic infections among 13 patients in the outbreak. Two types (types 1 and 4) of the strains were involved in the death of five patients. The other infections were sporadic. The clarity and polymorphism of the chromosomal digestion patterns enabled us to discriminate between isolates which could not be differentiated by antibiogram or plasmid analysis. Classification of the genomic DNA fingerprinting patterns by PFGE is therefore proposed as a useful method for investigating the source, transmission, and spread of nosocomial MRSA infections.

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