The Univeristy of Melbourne The Royal Melbourne Hopspital

A joint venture between The University of Melbourne and The Royal Melbourne Hospital

Hospital and Healthcare Pathogens (Past Projects)

A genomic epidemiological investigation of a multi-resistant Staphylococcus capitis clone associated with neonatal sepsis

Project Summary

Coagulase-negative staphylococci (CoNS) are common commensals of the human skin and mucosa that are important opportunistic pathogens that cause nosocomial bloodstream and indwelling medical device-related infections, with Staphylococcus capitis in particular being recognised as an important cause of neonatal late onset sepsis.  A sustained outbreak of S. capitis infections lasting several years occurred in a New Zealand NICU, despite extensive infection control efforts. The strain was found to be the same pulsotype (NRCS-A) as a globally disseminated strain. NICU blood and screening isolates, as well as staff, environmental and adult patient isolates were collected. In addition, isolates from two other NZ NICUs were collected.

The aims of this project are (1) to determine whether NRCS-A S. capitis strains were circulating within the Southern Hemisphere, (2) to provide information on possible sources of infection and routes of transmission and (3) to provide a genomic context to explain the persistence and success of this apparently hospital adapted isolate.

Project Partners

University of Otago, Dunedin, New Zealand

Institute of Environmental Science and Research (ESR), New Zealand


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