Genomic insights into the emergence and spread of international clones of healthcare-, community- and livestock-associated meticillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus: blurring of the traditional definitions

A. M. Bal, G. W. Coombs, M. T. G. Holden, J. A. Lindsay, G. R. Nimmo, P. Tattevin, R. L. Skov

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Abstract

The evolution of meticillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) from meticillin-susceptible S. aureus has been a result of the accumulation of genetic elements under selection pressure from antibiotics. The traditional classification of MRSA into healthcare-associated MRSA (HA-MRSA) and community-associated MRSA (CA-MRSA) is no longer relevant as there is significant overlap of identical clones between these groups, with an increasing recognition of human infection caused by livestock-associated MRSA (LA-MRSA). Genomic studies have enabled us to model the epidemiology of MRSA along these lines. In this review, we discuss the clinical relevance of genomic studies, particularly whole-genome sequencing, in the investigation of outbreaks. We also discuss the blurring of each of the three epidemiological groups (HA-MRSA, CA-MRSA and LA-MRSA), demonstrating the limited relevance of this classification.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)95-101
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Global Antimicrobial Resistance
Volume6
Early online date17 May 2016
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2016

Keywords

  • MRSA clones
  • MRSA epidemiology
  • Whole-genome sequencing

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