July 19, 2019  |  

Transmission of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus via deceased donor liver transplantation confirmed by whole genome sequencing.

Donor-derived bacterial infection is a recognized complication of solid organ transplantation (SOT). The present report describes the clinical details and successful outcome in a liver transplant recipient despite transmission of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) from a deceased donor with MRSA endocarditis and bacteremia. We further describe whole genome sequencing (WGS) and complete de novo assembly of the donor and recipient MRSA isolate genomes, which confirms that both isolates are genetically 100% identical. We propose that similar application of WGS techniques to future investigations of donor bacterial transmission would strengthen the definition of proven bacterial transmission in SOT, particularly in the presence of highly clonal bacteria such as MRSA. WGS will further improve our understanding of the epidemiology of bacterial transmission in SOT and the risk of adverse patient outcomes when it occurs.© Copyright 2014 The American Society of Transplantation and the American Society of Transplant Surgeons.


July 19, 2019  |  

Evolution of hypervirulence by a MRSA clone through acquisition of a transposable element.

Staphylococcus aureus has evolved as a pathogen that causes a range of diseases in humans. There are two dominant modes of evolution thought to explain most of the virulence differences between strains. First, virulence genes may be acquired from other organisms. Second, mutations may cause changes in the regulation and expression of genes. Here we describe an evolutionary event in which transposition of an IS element has a direct impact on virulence gene regulation resulting in hypervirulence. Whole-genome analysis of a methicillin-resistant S. aureus (MRSA) strain USA500 revealed acquisition of a transposable element (IS256) that is absent from close relatives of this strain. Of the multiple copies of IS256 found in the USA500 genome, one was inserted in the promoter sequence of repressor of toxins (Rot), a master transcriptional regulator responsible for the expression of virulence factors in S. aureus. We show that insertion into the rot promoter by IS256 results in the derepression of cytotoxin expression and increased virulence. Taken together, this work provides new insight into evolutionary strategies by which S. aureus is able to modify its virulence properties and demonstrates a novel mechanism by which horizontal gene transfer directly impacts virulence through altering toxin regulation. © 2014 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.


July 19, 2019  |  

Single-molecule sequencing reveals the molecular basis of multidrug-resistance in ST772 methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus.

Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) is a major cause of hospital-associated infection, but there is growing awareness of the emergence of multidrug-resistant lineages in community settings around the world. One such lineage is ST772-MRSA-V, which has disseminated globally and is increasingly prevalent in India. Here, we present the complete genome sequence of DAR4145, a strain of the ST772-MRSA-V lineage from India, and investigate its genomic characteristics in regards to antibiotic resistance and virulence factors.Sequencing using single-molecule real-time technology resulted in the assembly of a single continuous chromosomal sequence, which was error-corrected, annotated and compared to nine draft genome assemblies of ST772-MRSA-V from Australia, Malaysia and India. We discovered numerous and redundant resistance genes associated with mobile genetic elements (MGEs) and known core genome mutations that explain the highly antibiotic resistant phenotype of DAR4145. Staphylococcal toxins and superantigens, including the leukotoxin Panton-Valentinin Leukocidin, were predominantly associated with genomic islands and the phage f-IND772PVL. Some of these mobile resistance and virulence factors were variably present in other strains of the ST772-MRSA-V lineage.The genomic characteristics presented here emphasize the contribution of MGEs to the emergence of multidrug-resistant and highly virulent strains of community-associated MRSA. Antibiotic resistance was further augmented by chromosomal mutations and redundancy of resistance genes. The complete genome of DAR4145 provides a valuable resource for future investigations into the global dissemination and phylogeography of ST772-MRSA-V.


July 19, 2019  |  

Complete bypass of restriction systems for major Staphylococcus aureus lineages.

Staphylococcus aureus is a prominent global nosocomial and community-acquired bacterial pathogen. A strong restriction barrier presents a major hurdle for the introduction of recombinant DNA into clinical isolates of S. aureus. Here, we describe the construction and characterization of the IMXXB series of Escherichia coli strains that mimic the type I adenine methylation profiles of S. aureus clonal complexes 1, 8, 30, and ST93. The IMXXB strains enable direct, high-efficiency transformation and streamlined genetic manipulation of major S. aureus lineages.The genetic manipulation of clinical S. aureus isolates has been hampered due to the presence of restriction modification barriers that detect and subsequently degrade inappropriately methylated DNA. Current methods allow the introduction of plasmid DNA into a limited subset of S. aureus strains at high efficiency after passage of plasmid DNA through the restriction-negative, modification-proficient strain RN4220. Here, we have constructed and validated a suite of E. coli strains that mimic the adenine methylation profiles of different clonal complexes and show high-efficiency plasmid DNA transfer. The ability to bypass RN4220 will reduce the cost and time involved for plasmid transfer into S. aureus. The IMXXB series of E. coli strains should expedite the process of mutant construction in diverse genetic backgrounds and allow the application of new techniques to the genetic manipulation of S. aureus. Copyright © 2015 Monk et al.


July 19, 2019  |  

Parallel epidemics of community-associated methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus USA300 infection in North and South America.

The community-associated methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (CA-MRSA) epidemic in the United States is attributed to the spread of the USA300 clone. An epidemic of CA-MRSA closely related to USA300 has occurred in northern South America (USA300 Latin-American variant, USA300-LV). Using phylogenomic analysis, we aimed to understand the relationships between these 2 epidemics.We sequenced the genomes of 51 MRSA clinical isolates collected between 1999 and 2012 from the United States, Colombia, Venezuela, and Ecuador. Phylogenetic analysis was used to infer the relationships and times since the divergence of the major clades.Phylogenetic analyses revealed 2 dominant clades that segregated by geographical region, had a putative common ancestor in 1975, and originated in 1989, in North America, and in 1985, in South America. Emergence of these parallel epidemics coincides with the independent acquisition of the arginine catabolic mobile element (ACME) in North American isolates and a novel copper and mercury resistance (COMER) mobile element in South American isolates.Our results reveal the existence of 2 parallel USA300 epidemics that shared a recent common ancestor. The simultaneous rapid dissemination of these 2 epidemic clades suggests the presence of shared, potentially convergent adaptations that enhance fitness and ability to spread.© The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Infectious Diseases Society of America. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.


July 19, 2019  |  

Recurrent methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus cutaneous abscesses and selection of reduced chlorhexidine susceptibility during chlorhexidine use.

We describe the selection of reduced chlorhexidine susceptibility during chlorhexidine use in a patient with two episodes of cutaneous USA300 methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus abscess. The second clinical isolate harbors a novel plasmid that encodes the QacA efflux pump. Greater use of chlorhexidine for disease prevention warrants surveillance for resistance. Copyright © 2015, American Society for Microbiology. All Rights Reserved.


July 19, 2019  |  

Single-molecule sequencing (PacBio) of the Staphylococcus capitis NRCS-A clone reveals the basis of multidrug resistance and adaptation to the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit environment.

The multi-resistant Staphylococcus capitis clone NRCS-A has recently been described as a major pathogen causing nosocomial, late-onset sepsis (LOS) in preterm neonates worldwide. NRCS-A representatives exhibit an atypical antibiotic resistance profile. Here, the complete closed genome (chromosomal and plasmid sequences) of NRCS-A prototype strain CR01 and the draft genomes of three other clinical NRCS-A strains from Australia, Belgium and the United Kingdom are annotated and compared to available non-NRCS-A S. capitis genomes. Our goal was to delineate the uniqueness of the NRCS-A clone with respect to antibiotic resistance, virulence factors and mobile genetic elements. We identified 6 antimicrobial resistance genes, all carried by mobile genetic elements. Previously described virulence genes present in the NRCS-A genomes are shared with the six non-NRCS-A S. capitis genomes. Overall, 63 genes are specific to the NRCS-A lineage, including 28 genes located in the methicillin-resistance cassette SCCmec. Among the 35 remaining genes, 25 are of unknown function, and 9 correspond to an additional type I restriction modification system (n = 3), a cytosine methylation operon (n = 2), and a cluster of genes related to the biosynthesis of teichoic acids (n = 4). Interestingly, a tenth gene corresponds to a resistance determinant for nisin (nsr gene), a bacteriocin secreted by potential NRCS-A strain niche competitors in the gut microbiota. The genomic characteristics presented here emphasize the contribution of mobile genetic elements to the emergence of multidrug resistance in the S. capitis NRCS-A clone. No NRCS-A-specific known virulence determinant was detected, which does not support a role for virulence as a driving force of NRCS-A emergence in NICUs worldwide. However, the presence of a nisin resistance determinant on the NRCS-A chromosome, but not in other S. capitis strains and most coagulase-negative representatives, might confer a competitive advantage to NRCS-A strains during the early steps of gut colonization in neonates. This suggests that the striking adaptation of NRCS-A to the NICU environment might be related to its specific antimicrobial resistance and also to a possible enhanced ability to challenge competing bacteria in its ecological niche.


July 19, 2019  |  

DNA target recognition domains in the Type I restriction and modification systems of Staphylococcus aureus.

Staphylococcus aureus displays a clonal population structure in which horizontal gene transfer between different lineages is extremely rare. This is due, in part, to the presence of a Type I DNA restriction–modification (RM) system given the generic name of Sau1, which maintains different patterns of methylation on specific target sequences on the genomes of different lineages. We have determined the target sequences recognized by the Sau1 Type I RM systems present in a wide range of the most prevalent S. aureus lineages and assigned the sequences recognized to particular target recognition domains within the RM enzymes. We used a range of biochemical assays on purified enzymes and single molecule real-time sequencing on genomic DNA to determine these target sequences and their patterns of methylation. Knowledge of the main target sequences for Sau1 will facilitate the synthesis of new vectors for transformation of the most prevalent lineages of this ‘untransformable’ bacterium.


July 7, 2019  |  

Accumulation-associated protein enhances Staphylococcus epidermidis biofilm formation under dynamic conditions and is required for infection in a rat catheter model.

Biofilm formation is the primary virulence factor of Staphylococcus epidermidis. S. epidermidis biofilms preferentially form on abiotic surfaces and may contain multiple matrix components, including proteins such as accumulation-associated protein (Aap). Following proteolytic cleavage of the A domain, which has been shown to enhance binding to host cells, B domain homotypic interactions support cell accumulation and biofilm formation. To further define the contribution of Aap to biofilm formation and infection, we constructed an aap allelic replacement mutant and an icaADBC aap double mutant. When subjected to fluid shear, strains deficient in Aap production produced significantly less biofilm than Aap-positive strains. To examine the in vivo relevance of our findings, we modified our previously described rat jugular catheter model and validated the importance of immunosuppression and the presence of a foreign body to the establishment of infection. The use of our allelic replacement mutants in the model revealed a significant decrease in bacterial recovery from the catheter and the blood in the absence of Aap, regardless of the production of polysaccharide intercellular adhesin (PIA), a well-characterized, robust matrix molecule. Complementation of the aap mutant with full-length Aap (containing the A domain), but not the B domain alone, increased initial attachment to microtiter plates, as did in trans expression of the A domain in adhesion-deficient Staphylococcus carnosus. These results demonstrate Aap contributes to S. epidermidis infection, which may in part be due to A domain-mediated attachment to abiotic surfaces. Copyright © 2015, American Society for Microbiology. All Rights Reserved.


July 7, 2019  |  

Sequence analysis of Staphylococcus hyicus ATCC 11249T, an etiological agent of exudative epidermitis in swine, reveals a type VII secretion system locus and a novel 116-kilobase genomic island harboring toxin-encoding genes.

Staphylococcus hyicus is the primary etiological agent of exudative epidermitis in swine. Analysis of the complete genome sequence of the type strain revealed a locus encoding a type VII secretion system and a large chromosomal island harboring the genes encoding exfoliative toxin ExhA and an EDIN toxin homolog. Copyright © 2015 Calcutt et al.


July 7, 2019  |  

Complete and assembled genome sequence of Staphylococcus aureus RKI4, a food-poisoning strain exhibiting a novel S. aureus pathogenicity island carrying seb.

The genome of Staphylococcus aureus RKI4, a strain isolated from feces of a patient in a case of staphylococcal food poisoning, was sequenced using combined Illumina and single-molecule real-time sequencing. Hierarchical assembly of the genome resulted in a 2,725,654-bp chromosome and a 17,905-bp mobile genetic element. Copyright © 2015 Stevens et al.


July 7, 2019  |  

First complete genome sequences of Staphylococcus aureus subsp. aureus Rosenbach 1884 (DSM 20231T), determined by PacBio Single-Molecule Real-Time Technology.

The first complete genome sequences of Staphylococcus aureus subsp. aureus Rosenbach 1884 strain DSM 20231(T), the type strain of the bacterium causing staphylococcal disease, were determined using PacBio RS II. The sequences represent the chromosome (2,755,072 bp long; G+C content, 32.86%) and a plasmid (27,490 bp long; G+C content, 30.69%). Copyright © 2015 Shiroma et al.


July 7, 2019  |  

Insights on virulence from the complete genome of Staphylococcus capitis.

Staphylococcus capitis is an opportunistic pathogen of the coagulase negative staphylococci (CoNS). Functional genomic studies of S. capitis have thus far been limited by a lack of available complete genome sequences. Here, we determined the closed S. capitis genome and methylome using Single Molecule Real Time (SMRT) sequencing. The strain, AYP1020, harbors a single circular chromosome of 2.44 Mb encoding 2304 predicted proteins, which is the smallest of all complete staphylococcal genomes sequenced to date. AYP1020 harbors two large mobile genetic elements; a plasmid designated pAYP1020 (59.6 Kb) and a prophage, FAYP1020 (48.5 Kb). Methylome analysis identified significant adenine methylation across the genome involving two distinct methylation motifs (1972 putative 6-methyladenine (m6A) residues identified). Putative adenine methyltransferases were also identified. Comparative analysis of AYP1020 and the closely related CoNS, S. epidermidis RP62a, revealed a host of virulence factors that likely contribute to S. capitis pathogenicity, most notably genes important for biofilm formation and a suite of phenol soluble modulins (PSMs); the expression/production of these factors were corroborated by functional assays. The complete S. capitis genome will aid future studies on the evolution and pathogenesis of the coagulase negative staphylococci.


July 7, 2019  |  

Methicillin-susceptible, vancomycin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, Brazil.

We report characterization of a methicillin-susceptible, vancomycin-resistant bloodstream isolate of Staphylococcus aureus recovered from a patient in Brazil. Emergence of vancomycin resistance in methicillin-susceptible S. aureus would indicate that this resistance trait might be poised to disseminate more rapidly among S. aureus and represents a major public health threat.


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