- A new clone of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), which is exclusive to Kochi, has been identified.
- The new clone, christened ‘t15669 MRSA’, is unique to seafood and the aquatic environment of Kerala.
- Scientists at the Central Institute of Fisheries Technology (CIFT), Kochi, identified the new clone while assessing the prevalence of MRSA in seafood and the environment.
- MRSA can lead to diseases ranging from milder form of skin infections, boils, furunculosis to life-threatening septicemia and bacteraemia from post-surgical contamination.
- The situation turns worse given their resistance to wide range of drugs, warned the researchers.
- However, as S. aureus causes disease by producing enterotoxin in the food, there is no immediate threat in consumption of seafood contaminated with MRSA.
- “[The emergence of MRSA] has been identified as a health concern globally since the 1960s.
- However, little information is available on the prevalence of MRSA and its clonal characteristics in seafood and the aquatic environment,”
- The presence of MRSA in fish meant for human consumption is a potential health hazard for food handlers.
- The fingerprinting of MRSA can be useful for tracing local source and spread of MRSA isolates in a defined geographical area.
Source: The Hindu