Whole-genome sequencing of multidrug-resistant Mycobacterium tuberculosis isolates from Myanmar

J Glob Antimicrob Resist. 2016 Sep:6:113-117. doi: 10.1016/j.jgar.2016.04.008. Epub 2016 May 30.


Drug-resistant tuberculosis (TB) is a major health threat in Myanmar. An initial study was conducted to explore the potential utility of whole-genome sequencing (WGS) for the diagnosis and management of drug-resistant TB in Myanmar. Fourteen multidrug-resistant Mycobacterium tuberculosis isolates were sequenced. Known resistance genes for a total of nine antibiotics commonly used in the treatment of drug-susceptible and multidrug-resistant TB (MDR-TB) in Myanmar were interrogated through WGS. All 14 isolates were MDR-TB, consistent with the results of phenotypic drug susceptibility testing (DST), and the Beijing lineage predominated. Based on the results of WGS, 9 of the 14 isolates were potentially resistant to at least one of the drugs used in the standard MDR-TB regimen but for which phenotypic DST is not conducted in Myanmar. This study highlights a need for the introduction of second-line DST as part of routine TB diagnosis in Myanmar as well as new classes of TB drugs to construct effective regimens.

Keywords: Drug-resistant TB; Myanmar; Whole-genome sequencing.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Antitubercular Agents
  • Drug Resistance, Multiple, Bacterial / genetics*
  • Genome, Bacterial*
  • Humans
  • Microbial Sensitivity Tests
  • Mutation
  • Myanmar
  • Mycobacterium tuberculosis / genetics*
  • Tuberculosis, Multidrug-Resistant / microbiology*


  • Antitubercular Agents