Objectives: Emergence and prevalence of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) have become a major universal health concern, limiting therapeutic options. Methods: A total number of 37 MRSA isolates, including 19 clinical isolates from hospitalized patients and 18 colonizing isolates from health care workers were identified from 3 hospitals, in Gorgan, North of Iran. Antimicrobial susceptibility test was performed using the disk diffusion method and E-test. The presence of virulence and antibiotic resistance determinants were evaluated by PCR. The genotypical characterization was further analyzed using multi-locus sequence, spa, staphylococcal cassette chromosome, mec (SCCmec), and agr typing. Results: The frequency of MRSA among S. aureus isolates was 38.14% (37/97). The most frequent S. aureus resistant isolates were found to be obstinate against penicillin (98%) and gentamicin (82.5%). Additionally, the lowest resistance rates were found against daptomycin (0%), vancomycin (2.7%), and quinupristin-dalfopristin (5.4%). All MRSA isolates were susceptible to daptomycin with minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC)50/MIC90 of 0.25/0.5 μg/mL. One isolate belonging to sequence type 239 (ST239)-SCCmecIII/t037 clone (MIC ≥16 μg/mL) was resistant to vancomycin. All but 1 isolate that shares ST22-SCCmec IV/t790 strain were positive for both tsst and pvl genes. The most predominant MRSA isolates (27%) were associated with ST239-SCCmec III/t037, and ST239-SCCmec III/t924 (16.2%) clones, subsequently. In our study, circulating MRSA strains were genetically diverse with a high prevalence of ST239-SCCmec III/t037 clone. Conclusion: These findings emphasize the need for future and continuous surveillance studies on MRSA to prevent the dissemination of existing multidrug resistance MRSA clones in an effective manner.
- Antibiotic resistance
- Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus
- Molecular characterization
- Virulence factors