Background: To evaluate the prevalence and microbiological characterization of community-acquired (CA) methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) nasal carriage in a kindergarten.
Methods: Point prevalence study. Nasal swabs were collected from healthy children younger than 7 years of age who were attending a kindergarten in Taipei, Taiwan. A parent questionnaire regarding MRSA risk factors was administered simultaneously. All CA-MRSA colonization isolates were archived for subsequent antimicrobial susceptibility and molecular typing.
Results: Of the 68 children who participated in the study, 17 (25%) had S. aureus isolated from nasal swabs. Nine (13.2%) of the 68 children had CA-MRSA carriage, and none of them had any identified risk factors. Antimicrobial susceptibility testing revealed all of the 9 CA-MRSA colonization isolates had uniformly high resistance (100%) to both clindamycin and erythromycin, the macrolide-lincosamide-streptogramin-constitutive phenotype and the ermB gene. Pulsed-field gel electrophoresis revealed 8 (88.9%) of 9 CA-MRSA colonization isolates were genetically related and multilocus sequence typing revealed all isolates had sequence type 59. All of the colonization isolates carried the staphylococcal cassette chromosome mec type IV, but none were positive for the Panton-Valentine leukocidin genes.
Conclusion: The results of this study suggest that a single predominant CA-MRSA colonization strain featuring high clindamycin resistance circulated in this kindergarten. Additionally, due to the established transmissibility of colonization isolates, the high prevalence of nasal carriage of CA-MRSA among healthy attendees in kindergartens may indicate the accelerated spread of CA-MRSA in the community.