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Evolution of MRSA During Hospital Transmission and Intercontinental Spread

Science  22 Jan 2010:
Vol. 327, Issue 5964, pp. 469-474
DOI: 10.1126/science.1182395

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Abstract

Current methods for differentiating isolates of predominant lineages of pathogenic bacteria often do not provide sufficient resolution to define precise relationships. Here, we describe a high-throughput genomics approach that provides a high-resolution view of the epidemiology and microevolution of a dominant strain of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA). This approach reveals the global geographic structure within the lineage, its intercontinental transmission through four decades, and the potential to trace person-to-person transmission within a hospital environment. The ability to interrogate and resolve bacterial populations is applicable to a range of infectious diseases, as well as microbial ecology.

  • * These authors contributed equally to this work.

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