• Detection of staphylococcal cassette chromosome mec type XI carrying highly divergent mecA, mecI, mecR1, blaZ, and ccr genes in human clinical isolates of clonal complex 130 methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus.

      Shore, Anna C; Deasy, Emily C; Slickers, Peter; Brennan, Grainne; O'Connell, Brian; Monecke, Stefan; Ehricht, Ralf; Coleman, David C; Microbiology Research Unit, Dublin Dental University Hospital, University of Dublin, Trinity College Dublin, Dublin, Ireland. (2011-08)
      Methicillin resistance in staphylococci is mediated by penicillin binding protein 2a (PBP 2a), encoded by mecA on mobile staphylococcal cassette chromosome mec (SCCmec) elements. In this study, two clonal complex 130 (CC130) methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) isolates from patients in Irish hospitals were identified that were phenotypically PBP 2a positive but lacked mecA by conventional PCR and by DNA microarray screening. The isolates were identified as methicillin-susceptible S. aureus using the GeneXpert real-time PCR assay. Whole-genome sequencing of one isolate (M10/0061) revealed a 30-kb SCCmec element encoding a class E mec complex with highly divergent blaZ-mecA-mecR1-mecI, a type 8 cassette chromosome recombinase (ccr) complex consisting of ccrA1-ccrB3, an arsenic resistance operon, and flanking direct repeats (DRs). The SCCmec element was almost identical to that of SCCmec type XI (SCCmec XI) identified by the Sanger Institute in sequence type 425 bovine MRSA strain LGA251 listed on the website of the International Working Group on the Classification of Staphylococcal Cassette Chromosome Elements. The open reading frames (ORFs) identified within SCCmec XI of M10/0061 exhibited 21 to 93% amino acid identity to ORFs in GenBank. A third DR was identified ca. 3 kb downstream of SCCmec XI, indicating the presence of a possible SCC remnant. SCCmec XI was also identified in the second CC130 MRSA isolate by PCR and sequencing. The CC130 MRSA isolates may be of animal origin as previously reported CC130 S. aureus strains were predominantly from bovine sources. The highly divergent nature of SCCmec XI relative to other SCCmec elements indicates that it may have originated in another taxon.
    • DNA microarray profiling of a diverse collection of nosocomial methicillin-resistant staphylococcus aureus isolates assigns the majority to the correct sequence type and staphylococcal cassette chromosome mec (SCCmec) type and results in the subsequent identification and characterization of novel SCCmec-SCCM1 composite islands.

      Shore, Anna C; Brennan, Orla M; Deasy, Emily C; Rossney, Angela S; Kinnevey, Peter M; Ehricht, Ralf; Monecke, Stefan; Coleman, David C; Microbiology Research Unit, Dublin Dental University Hospital, University of Dublin, Trinity College, Dublin, Ireland. (Antimicrobial agents and chemotherapy, 2012-10)
      One hundred seventy-five isolates representative of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) clones that predominated in Irish hospitals between 1971 and 2004 and that previously underwent multilocus sequence typing (MLST) and staphylococcal cassette chromosome mec (SCCmec) typing were characterized by spa typing (175 isolates) and DNA microarray profiling (107 isolates). The isolates belonged to 26 sequence type (ST)-SCCmec types and subtypes and 35 spa types. The array assigned all isolates to the correct MLST clonal complex (CC), and 94% (100/107) were assigned an ST, with 98% (98/100) correlating with MLST. The array assigned all isolates to the correct SCCmec type, but subtyping of only some SCCmec elements was possible. Additional SCCmec/SCC genes or DNA sequence variation not detected by SCCmec typing was detected by array profiling, including the SCC-fusidic acid resistance determinant Q6GD50/fusC. Novel SCCmec/SCC composite islands (CIs) were detected among CC8 isolates and comprised SCCmec IIA-IIE, IVE, IVF, or IVg and a ccrAB4-SCC element with 99% DNA sequence identity to SCC(M1) from ST8/t024-MRSA, SCCmec VIII, and SCC-CI in Staphylococcus epidermidis. The array showed that the majority of isolates harbored one or more superantigen (94%; 100/107) and immune evasion cluster (91%; 97/107) genes. Apart from fusidic acid and trimethoprim resistance, the correlation between isolate antimicrobial resistance phenotype and the presence of specific resistance genes was ≥97%. Array profiling allowed high-throughput, accurate assignment of MRSA to CCs/STs and SCCmec types and provided further evidence of the diversity of SCCmec/SCC. In most cases, array profiling can accurately predict the resistance phenotype of an isolate.