Staphylococcus— Molecular Pathogenesis, Virulence Regulation and Antibiotics Resistance

A special issue of Antibiotics (ISSN 2079-6382). This special issue belongs to the section "Mechanism and Evolution of Antibiotic Resistance".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 30 June 2024 | Viewed by 6832

Special Issue Editor


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Guest Editor
Department of Microbiology, Institute of Experimental Biology, Faculty of Biology, Adam Mickiewicz University, Poznań, Uniwersytetu Poznańskiego 6, 61-614 Poznań, Poland
Interests: staphylococci; pathogenesis; antimicrobial resistance; skin microbiota; food safety

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Staphylococci have attracted recent attention because of their pathogenic potential and their ability to become resistant to antibiotics. In particular, methicillin-resistant S. aureus (MRSA) has been extensively studied. Historically associated with hospitals and other healthcare settings, in the last decade, it has also become a frequent cause of infections in the community. The finding that MRSA, as well multidrug-resistant staphylococci, frequently colonize animals, including home pets, has been a reason for concern. It is well-known that the close contact between pets and their owners provide an opportunity for the exchange of skin-associated bacteria. The concept of "One Health" clearly recognizes the link between human health and animal health. Microbiome studies are currently underway to determine the composition of staphylococcal species on the skin of animals, including dogs, cats and birds. The question is whether these bacteria can cause diseases in humans. This Special Issue seeks manuscript submissions that will further our understanding of the virulence mechanisms of staphylococci. Submissions that contribute to answering the question of whether methicillin-resistant staphylococci and multidrug-resistant staphylococci occur in domestic and farm animals are especially encouraged.

Prof. Dr. Ewa Szczuka
Guest Editor

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Keywords

  • staphylococci
  • MRS
  • antimicrobial resistance
  • virulence factors
  • skin mikrobiota

Published Papers (5 papers)

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Research

22 pages, 2000 KiB  
Article
Staphylococcus capitis Bloodstream Isolates: Investigation of Clonal Relationship, Resistance Profile, Virulence and Biofilm Formation
by Letícia Calixto Romero, Lucas Porangaba Silva, Nathalia Bibiana Teixeira, Karen Vilegas de Camargo, Milena Aparecida Del Masso Pereira, José Eduardo Corrente, Valéria Cataneli Pereira and Maria de Lourdes Ribeiro de Souza da Cunha
Antibiotics 2024, 13(2), 147; https://doi.org/10.3390/antibiotics13020147 - 01 Feb 2024
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Abstract
Staphylococcus capitis has been recognized as a relevant opportunistic pathogen, particularly its persistence in neonatal ICUs around the world. Therefore, the aim of this study was to describe the epidemiological profile of clinical isolates of S. capitis and to characterize the factors involved [...] Read more.
Staphylococcus capitis has been recognized as a relevant opportunistic pathogen, particularly its persistence in neonatal ICUs around the world. Therefore, the aim of this study was to describe the epidemiological profile of clinical isolates of S. capitis and to characterize the factors involved in the persistence and pathogenesis of these strains isolated from blood cultures collected in a hospital in the interior of the state of São Paulo, Brazil. A total of 141 S. capitis strains were submitted to detection of the mecA gene and SCCmec typing by multiplex PCR. Genes involved in biofilm production and genes encoding enterotoxins and hemolysins were detected by conventional PCR. Biofilm formation was evaluated by the polystyrene plate adherence test and phenotypic resistance was investigated by the disk diffusion method. Finally, pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) was used to analyze the clonal relationship between isolates. The mecA gene was detected in 99 (70.2%) isolates, with this percentage reaching 100% in the neonatal ICU. SCCmec type III was the most prevalent type, detected in 31 (31.3%) isolates and co-occurrence of SCCmec was also observed. In vitro biofilm formation was detected in 46 (32.6%) isolates but was not correlated with the presence of the ica operon genes. Furthermore, biofilm production in ICU isolates was favored by hyperosmotic conditions, which are common in ICUs because of the frequent parenteral nutrition. Analysis of the clonal relationship between the isolates investigated in the present study confirms a homogeneous profile of S. capitis and the persistence of clones that are prevalent in the neonatal ICU and disseminated across the hospital. This study highlights the adaptation of isolates to specific hospital environments and their high clonality. Full article
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12 pages, 1547 KiB  
Article
Longitudinal Study of Antibiotic Resistance of Staphylococci from Cases of Subclinical Mastitis in Sheep in Greece: Incidence and Risk Factors
by Charalambia K. Michael, Daphne T. Lianou, Katerina Tsilipounidaki, Zoe Florou, Natalia G. C. Vasileiou, Vasia S. Mavrogianni, Efthymia Petinaki and George C. Fthenakis
Antibiotics 2023, 12(12), 1703; https://doi.org/10.3390/antibiotics12121703 - 07 Dec 2023
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Abstract
The present paper extends a previous publication on a field study of subclinical mastitis in sheep and focuses on the following laboratory characteristics of the staphylococcal isolates: antibiotic resistance and association with biofilm formation. The specific objectives of the present study were (a) [...] Read more.
The present paper extends a previous publication on a field study of subclinical mastitis in sheep and focuses on the following laboratory characteristics of the staphylococcal isolates: antibiotic resistance and association with biofilm formation. The specific objectives of the present study were (a) to describe the incidence of isolation of antibiotic-resistant staphylococci from cases of mastitis throughout the milking period in dairy sheep flocks and (b) to identify relevant risk factors, which would contribute to the sustainable control of the infection. Staphylococcal isolates from subclinical mastitis were evaluated for antibiotic resistance to 18 antibiotics. Antibiotic resistance was detected in 57 of the 179 staphylococcal isolates from subclinical mastitis (31.8%). Resistance was recorded against 11 antibiotics, most often against ampicillin (63.2% of resistant isolates), penicillin (63.2%) and tetracycline (47.4%). Isolates resistant to ampicillin and penicillin were recovered in all 12 farms. Twenty-one multidrug-resistant isolates (11.7%) were also recovered. The incidence risk of isolation of staphylococci resistant to at least one (any) antibiotic throughout the study period was 23.8%. The incidence risk of isolation of staphylococci resistant to oxacillin was 5.0%; that of isolation of multidrug-resistant staphylococci was 8.8%. With regard to increased incidence risk of isolation of staphylococci resistant to at least one (any) antibiotic and increased incidence risk of isolation of staphylococci resistant to oxacillin, the omission of anti-staphylococcal mastitis vaccination of ewes emerged as a risk factor. With regard to increased incidence risk of isolation of multidrug-resistant staphylococci, the following variables emerged as risk factors: (a) higher number of antibiotics used on the farm for the treatment of mastitis and (b) younger age of lambs taken away from their dam. Most biofilm-forming antibiotic-resistant staphylococci were recovered from farms where anti-staphylococcal mastitis vaccination was not applied (55.9% versus 44.1% from farms where anti-staphylococcal mastitis vaccination was applied). Full article
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9 pages, 265 KiB  
Article
Occurrence and Antimicrobial Resistance among Staphylococci Isolated from the Skin Microbiota of Healthy Goats and Sheep
by Maria Wesołowska and Ewa Szczuka
Antibiotics 2023, 12(11), 1594; https://doi.org/10.3390/antibiotics12111594 - 05 Nov 2023
Viewed by 1034
Abstract
Staphylococci colonize the skin and mucous membranes of different animals. The purpose of this study was to determine the staphylococcal composition of the skin microbiota of healthy, non-vet visiting, and antimicrobially non-treated sheep and goats. In total, 83 strains (44 from goats and [...] Read more.
Staphylococci colonize the skin and mucous membranes of different animals. The purpose of this study was to determine the staphylococcal composition of the skin microbiota of healthy, non-vet visiting, and antimicrobially non-treated sheep and goats. In total, 83 strains (44 from goats and 39 from sheep) were isolated and identified using matrix-assisted laser desorption ionization time of flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF MS). The diversity of the isolated Staphylococcus species was relatively high, and only coagulase-negative staphylococci (CoNS) were isolated. In sheep, S. vitulinus (9/39, 23.1%) was the most common species, followed by S. equorum (8/39, 20.5%), S. lentus (7/39, 17.9%), S. sciuri (6/39, 15.4%), S. xylosus (6/39, 15.4%), S. warneri (1/39, 2.6%), S. simulans (1/39, 2.6%), and S. nepalensis (1/39, 2.6%). In the goats, the most common species was S. sciuri, which was detected in 13 (29.5%) animals. The goat skin was also inhabited by S. equorum (7/44, 15.9%), S. vitulinus (6/44, 13.6%), S. cohnii (5/44, 11.4%), S. lentus (4/44, 9.1%), S. suscinus (3/44, 6.8%), S. caprae, (2/44, 4.5%), S. auricularis (2/44, 4.5%), S. warneri (1/44, 2.3%), and S. xylosus (1/44, 2.3%). Only one S. xylosus strain of goat origin carried the enterotoxin gene (sea). Antimicrobial resistance was not common among the isolated staphylococci. Only 31 (37.3%) strains were resistant to at least one antimicrobial agent, with the highest frequency of resistance to penicillin (16.8%), followed by clindamycin (9.6%), erythromycin (8.4%), moxifloxacin (8.4%), and tetracycline (7.2%). All isolates were susceptible to eight antibiotics (amikacin, gentamycin, ciprofloxacin, levofloxacin, rifampicin, chloramphenicol, trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole, and tigecycline), representing six different classes. Three isolates displayed a multi-resistance phenotype (MDR): the goat isolates S. cohnii and S. sciuri, as well as the ewe isolate S. xylosus. The MDR S. cohnii isolate was found to be methicillin-resistant and carried the mecA gene. Moreover, the staphylococci isolated from the healthy animals carried genes conferring resistance to β-lactams (mecA, blaZ), tetracyclines (tetL, tetK), macrolides (ermB, ermC), lincosamides (lnu), and fluoroquinolones (grlA). However, the prevalence of these genes was low. Full article
13 pages, 2181 KiB  
Article
Prevalence of the SigB-Deficient Phenotype among Clinical Staphylococcus aureus Isolates Linked to Bovine Mastitis
by Anna Walzl, Helene Marbach, Darya Belikova, Claus Vogl, Monika Ehling-Schulz, Simon Heilbronner and Tom Grunert
Antibiotics 2023, 12(4), 699; https://doi.org/10.3390/antibiotics12040699 - 03 Apr 2023
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Abstract
Phenotypic adaptation has been associated with persistent, therapy-resistant Staphylococcus aureus infections. Recently, we described within-host evolution towards a Sigma factor B (SigB)-deficient phenotype in a non-human host, a naturally infected dairy cow with chronic, persistent mastitis. However, to our knowledge, the prevalence of [...] Read more.
Phenotypic adaptation has been associated with persistent, therapy-resistant Staphylococcus aureus infections. Recently, we described within-host evolution towards a Sigma factor B (SigB)-deficient phenotype in a non-human host, a naturally infected dairy cow with chronic, persistent mastitis. However, to our knowledge, the prevalence of SigB deficiency among clinical S. aureus isolates remains unknown. In this study, we screened a collection of bovine mastitis isolates for phenotypic traits typical for SigB deficiency: decreased carotenoid pigmentation, increased proteolysis, secretion of α-hemolysin and exoproteins. Overall, 8 out of 77 (10.4%) isolates of our bovine mastitis collection exhibited the SigB-deficient phenotype. These isolates were assigned to various clonal complexes (CC8, CC9, CC97, CC151, CC3666). We further demonstrated a strong positive correlation between asp23-expression (a marker of SigB activity) and carotenoid pigmentation (r = 0.6359, p = 0.0008), underlining the role of pigmentation as a valuable predictor of the functional status of SigB. Sequencing of the sigB operon (mazEF-rsbUVW-sigB) indicated the phosphatase domain of the RsbU protein as a primary target of mutations leading to SigB deficiency. Indeed, by exchanging single nucleotides in rsbU, we could either induce SigB deficiency or restore the SigB phenotype, demonstrating the pivotal role of RsbU for SigB functionality. The data presented highlight the clinical relevance of SigB deficiency, and future studies are needed to exploit its role in staphylococcal infections. Full article
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16 pages, 1235 KiB  
Article
Staphylococcus aureus in Horses in Nigeria: Occurrence, Antimicrobial, Methicillin and Heavy Metal Resistance and Virulence Potentials
by Obichukwu Chisom Nwobi, Madubuike Umunna Anyanwu, Ishmael Festus Jaja, Innocent Okwundu Nwankwo, Chukwuemeka Calistus Okolo, Chibundo Adaobi Nwobi, Ekene Vivienne Ezenduka and James Wabwire Oguttu
Antibiotics 2023, 12(2), 242; https://doi.org/10.3390/antibiotics12020242 - 24 Jan 2023
Viewed by 1512
Abstract
Staphylococcus aureus was isolated from a total of 360 nasal and groin skin swabs from 180 systematic randomly-selected horses slaughtered for meat at Obollo-Afor, Enugu State, Southeast Nigeria and antimicrobial, methicillin and heavy metal resistance profile and virulence potentials of the isolates established. Baird-Parker [...] Read more.
Staphylococcus aureus was isolated from a total of 360 nasal and groin skin swabs from 180 systematic randomly-selected horses slaughtered for meat at Obollo-Afor, Enugu State, Southeast Nigeria and antimicrobial, methicillin and heavy metal resistance profile and virulence potentials of the isolates established. Baird-Parker agar with egg yolk tellurite was used for S. aureus isolation. S. aureus isolates were confirmed biochemically and serologically using a specific S. aureus Staphytect Plus™ latex agglutination test kit. The antimicrobial resistance profile, methicillin, vancomycin and inducible clindamycin resistance, and β-lactamase production of the isolates were determined with disc diffusion. Tolerance to Copper, Cadmium, Lead and Zinc was assessed using the agar dilution method and virulence potentials were determined using phenotypic methods. Forty-three (23.9%) of the 180 horses harbored S. aureus. Some 71 S. aureus were recovered from the 360 samples. Two (2.8%) of the 71 S. aureus were methicillin-resistant S. aureus (MRSA) and 69 (97.2%) were methicillin-susceptible. MRSA was recovered from 2 (1.1%) of the 180 horses. Some 9.4% of the isolates were multiple drug-resistant (MDR). The mean multiple antibiotic resistance indices (MARI) for the isolates was 0.24. Heavy metal resistance rate of the isolates ranged between 35.4–70.4%. The isolates, including the MRSA strains, displayed virulence potentials as clumping factor and catalase, gelatinase, caseinase, heamolysin, and biofilm was at the rate of 100%, 53.5%, 43.7%, 18.3% and 23.9%, respectively. This study showed that a considerable percentage of horses slaughtered in Obollo-Afor Southeastern Nigeria are potential reservoirs of virulent multiple drug- and heavy metal-resistant S. aureus, including MRSA, that could spread to humans and the environment. Full article
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