Molecular epidemiology and clinical characteristics of drug-resistant Mycobacterium tuberculosis in a TB referral hospital in China



Despite the large number of drug-resistant tuberculosis (TB) cases in China, few studies have comprehensively analyzed the drug resistance-associated gene mutations and genotypes in relation to the clinical characteristics of M. tuberculosis (Mtb) isolates.

Methodology/Principal Findings

We thus analyzed the phenotypic and genotypic drug resistance profiles of 115 Mtb clinical isolates recovered from a tuberculosis referral hospital in Beijing, China. We also performed genotyping by 28 loci MIRU-VNTR analysis. Socio-demographic and clinical data were retrieved from medical records and analyzed. In total, 78 types of mutations (including 42 previously reported and 36 newly identified ones) were identified in 115 Mtb clinical isolates. There was significant correlation between phenotypic and genotypic drug resistance rates for first-line anti-TB drugs (P<0.001). Genotyping revealed 101 MIRU-VNTR types, with 20 isolates (17.4%) being clustered and 95 isolates (82.6%) having unique genotypes. Higher proportion of re-treatment cases was observed among patients with clustered isolates than those with unique MIRU-VNTR genotypes (75.0% vs. 41.1%). Moreover, clinical epidemiological links were identified among patients infected by Mtb strains belonging to the same clusters, suggesting a potential of transmission among patients.


Our study provided information on novel potential drug resistance-associated mutations in Mtb. In addition, the genotyping data from our study suggested that enforcement of the implementation of genotyping in diagnostic routines would provide important information for better monitor and control of TB transmission.

Read the full article here.

Source: PLOS ONE

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By Qi Wang et al.

Published: Oct. 13, 2014, 8:08 p.m.

Last updated: Oct. 14, 2014, 1:19 a.m.

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