Lien vers Pubmed [PMID] – 12409360
J. Clin. Microbiol. 2002 Nov;40(11):3970-5
Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) is one of the most important causes of hospital infections worldwide. High-level resistance to methicillin is caused by the mecA gene, which encodes an alternative penicillin-binding protein, PBP 2a. To determine the clonal relationships between methicillin-susceptible S. aureus (MSSA) and MRSA, we typed 1,069 S. aureus isolates (493 MSSA isolates and 576 MRSA isolates), collected mainly in North American and European hospitals between the 1960s and the year 2000, using pulsed-field gel electrophoresis and ribotyping. Of 10 widespread S. aureus lineages recognized, 8 had corresponding mecA-positive strains. Multiresistant MRSA strains are found in hospitals worldwide, while unrelated and more susceptible strains represent less than 1% of the MRSA population. This supports the hypothesis that horizontal transfer plays an important role in the dissemination of the mecA gene in the S. aureus population.