Molecular epidemiology of MRSA in 13 ICUs from eight European countries

behalf of the MOSAR WP3 Study Group, U. Dumpis (Member of the Working Group), A. Melbarde-Kelmere (Member of the Working Group)

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Citations (Scopus)


Objectives: The European epidemiology of MRSA is changing with the emergence of community-associated MRSA (CA-MRSA) and livestock-associated MRSA (LA-MRSA). In this study,we investigated the molecular epidemiology of MRSA during 2 years in 13 ICUs in France, Greece, Italy, Latvia, Luxemburg, Portugal, Slovenia and Spain. Methods: Surveillance cultures for MRSA from nose and wounds were obtained on admission and twice weekly from all patients admitted to an ICU for ≥3 days. The first MRSA isolate per patient was genotyped in a central laboratory by MLST, spa typing, agr typing and SCCmec (sub)typing. Risk factors for patients with an unknown history of MRSA colonization were identified. Results: Overall, 14390 ICU patients were screened, of whom 8519 stayed in an ICU for ≥3 days. Overall MRSA admission prevalence was 3.9% and ranged from 1.0% to 7.0% for individual ICUs. Overall MRSA acquisition rate was 2.5/1000 patient days at risk and ranged from 0.2 to 8/1000 patient days at risk per ICU. In total, 557 putative MRSA isolates were submitted to the central laboratory for typing, of which 511 (92%) were confirmed as MRSA. Each country had a distinct epidemiology, with ST8-IVc (UK-EMRSA-2/-6, USA500) being most prevalent, especially in France and Spain, and detected in ICUs in five of eight countries. Seventeen (3%) and three (<1%) isolateswere categorized as CA-MRSA and LA-MRSA, respectively. Risk factors for MRSA carriage on ICU admission were age >70 years and hospitalization within 1 year prior to ICU admission. Conclusions: The molecular epidemiology of MRSA in 13 European ICUs in eight countries was homogeneous within, but heterogeneous between, countries. CA-MRSA and LA-MRSA genotypes and Panton-Valentine leucocidin-producing isolates were detected sporadically.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)45-52
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2016
Externally publishedYes

Field of Science*

  • 1.6 Biological sciences
  • 3.1 Basic medicine

Publication Type*

  • 1.1. Scientific article indexed in Web of Science and/or Scopus database


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