Characteristics related to antimicrobial resistance and biofilm formation of widespread methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus epidermidis ST2 and ST23 lineages in Rio de Janeiro hospitals, Brazil.
ABSTRACT Staphylococcus epidermidis is a leading cause of hospital-acquired infections, mostly associated with the use of medical devices in seriously ill or immunocompromised patients. Currently, the characteristics of methicillin-resistant S. epidermidis (MRSE) isolates from Rio de Janeiro hospitals are unknown. In this study, staphylococcal chromosomal cassette mec (SCCmec) types, antimicrobial susceptibility profiles, biofilm formation genes, and multilocus sequence types (MLST) were investigated in 35 MRSE clinical isolates. The collection of isolates was previously well characterized by pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) into 2 main genotypes (A and B, 22 isolates) and 10 sporadic genotypes (13 isolates). MLST revealed a total of 8 different sequence types (STs), but ST2 and ST23, which were icaAB-positive, represented the majority (71.4%) of MRSE isolates tested. Almost all isolates (91.4%) belonged to clonal complex 2. SCCmec types III and IV were identified among 71.4% of the isolates, while the remaining was nontypeable. The predominant MRSE genotypes were defined as SCCmec type III/ST2 (PFGE type A) and SCCmec type IV/ST23 (PFGE type B) isolates, which were both associated with high antimicrobial resistance and presence of biofilm-related genes.