A number of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) isolates were recovered over a period of several weeks from blood samples and from the heart valve of a patient who underwent extensive vancomycin chemotherapy for persistent S. aureus bacteremia. Consecutive isolates showed gradually decreasing growth rates during in vitro cultivation and increasing vancomycin MICs, from an MIC of 1 μg/ml for the initial isolate to an MIC of 8 μg/ml for the final MRSA isolates, which also became tolerant to vancomycin. Major changes were observed in the oxacillin resistance phenotype of several of the isolates - apparently related to in vivo exposure to imipenem, which was also used during a period of chemotherapy. Both the gradually increasing vancomycin MICs and the changes in oxacillin resistance could be reproduced by appropriate exposure of the initial MRSA isolate to antibiotics in vitro. All isolates had the same pulsed-field gel electrophoresis pattern, spaA type, and multilocus sequence type (MLST), which was identified as a single-locus variant of ST5, the MLST characteristic of previously characterized MRSA isolates with reduced susceptibility to vancomycin in the United States and Japan.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Microbiology (medical)