Clinical Microbiology and Antimicrobial Chemotherapy. 2011; 13(2):188-195
Since 1961, pandemic methicillin-resistant S. aureus (MRSA) clones causing severe nosocomial infections have been distributed worldwide. The Hungarian clone having ST239 genotype and Staphylococcal cassette chromosome mec (SCCmec) type III is one of the common epidemic clones and prevalent in Russia. The rapid screening assay for Hungarian ST239-III clone using multiplex polymerase chain reaction (PCR) was proposed in this study. The PCR assay showed that the only Hungarian clone (of 10 common pandemic MRSA clones) carries a unique set of genes encoding staphylococcal enterotoxins (SE) – sea, sek and seq (it may result in severe infection and immunosupression) and can (collagen-adhesin) gene. Specific primers and probes for three virulence genes (sea, seq, can) were designed for multiplex PCR. Primers for mecA gene (to distinguish between MRSA and MSSA) and S. aureus-specific nuclease gene nuc (to distinguish between MRSA/MSSA and coagulase-negative staphylococci) were also used. This multiplex PCR assay rapidly and accurately detected Hungarian clone from Russia.