Multiplex PCR use for Staphylococcus aureus identification and oxacillin and mupirocin resistance evaluation

  • A. Braoios
  • A. Fluminhan Júnior
  • A.C. Pizzolitto
Keywords: PCR Multiplex. Oxacillin-resistant. Mupirocin. Staphylococcus aureus.


Oxacillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus represents a serious problem in hospitals worldwide, increasing infected patients’ mortality and morbidity and raising treatment costs and internment time. In this study, the results of using the Multiplex PCR technique to amplify fragments of the genes femA (specific-species), mecA (oxacillin resistance) and ileS-2 (mupirocin resistance) were compared with those of tests conventionally used to identify S. aureus isolates and ascertain their resistance to drugs. Fifty S. aureus strains were isolated from patients receiving treatment at UNOESTE University Hospital in Presidente Prudente, SP, Brazil. The 686 bp fragment corresponding to the gene femA was amplified and detected in all the isolates. On the other hand, the 310 bp fragment corresponding to the mecA gene was amplified in 29 (58%) of the isolates. All of the isolates showed sensitivity to mupirocin in the agar diffusion test, which was corroborated by the lack of any amplicon of the 456 bp fragment corresponding to the ileS-2 gene, in the PCR bands. The conventional tests to identify S. aureus and detect resistance to oxacillin and mupirocin showed 100% agreement with the PCR Multiplex results. The use of techniques for rapid and accurate identification of bacteria and assessment of their resistance may be valuable in the control of infection by resistant strains, allowing the rapid isolation and treatment of an infected patient. However, the results demonstrate that traditional phenotypic tests are also reliable, though they take more time.

Research Article