Analysis of the epidemiology of Staphylococcus aureus (SA) ocular infections and virulence factors of the isolates with a special emphasis on their drug resistance, and the ability of biofilm formation. In a period from 2009 to 2013, 83 isolates of SA were prospectively collected and preserved in a multicenter laboratory-based study carried out in southern Poland. Epidemiological, phenotypic, and genotypic analyses were performed. The resistance and virulence genes were analyzed. Screening for the biofilm formation was provided. Among the materials derived from ocular infections from 456 patients, SA was found in 18.2% (n = 83) of cases (one SA isolate per one patient). Most infections were identified in the age group of over 65 years (OR 8.4 95%CI; 1.03-68.49). The majority of patients (73.4%) were hospitalized. Among the virulence and resistance genes, the most frequently detected were the lukE (72.2%, n = 60) and ermA (15.6%, n = 13) genes. A positive result of the CRA test (the ability of biofilm formation) was found in 66.2% (n = 55) of isolates. Among the strains under study, 6.0% (n = 5) had the methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus phenotype, and 26.5% (n = 22) had the macrolide-lincosamide-streptogramin B phenotype. In 48 (57.8%) isolates the neomycin resistance was revealed. All isolates under study were sensitive to vancomycin. The population most susceptible to ocular SA infections consists of hospitalized patients aged 65 and more. The SA strains under study showed the increased ability to biofilm formation. In the strains tested, high susceptibility to chloramphenicol and fluoroquinolones was demonstrated. However, the high level of drug resistance to neomycin detected in this study among SA isolates and the blood-ocular barrier makes it difficult to treat ocular infections.

Publication timeframe:
4 times per year
Journal Subjects:
Life Sciences, Microbiology and Virology