May 31, 2013
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Resistant salmonella strain potential risk to public health

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A ciprofloxacin-resistant strain of Salmonella enterica poses a potential public health threat and should be a targeted strain in S. enterica control programs, researchers from the Pasteur Institute in France have reported.

“The Kentucky ST198-X1 isolates are resistant to several antimicrobial drugs, including ciprofloxacin, which is an unusual resistance trait in S. enterica,” the researchers wrote in The Lancet Infectious Diseases. “[From 2002-2008], laboratory surveillance systems for salmonellosis in France, England and Denmark detected 489 cases of infection with this strain in people who traveled to or stayed in Africa or the Middle East.”

The researchers analyzed isolates of S. enterica serotype Kentucky ST198-X1 that were collected in France from 2000 to 2011 and in Morocco from 2003 to 2011. In France, there were 954 isolates of the strain and in Morocco, there were 30 isolates.

From 2000 to 2008, 40% of the isolates in France were resistant to ciprofloxacin and from 2009 to 2011, 83% were resistant. According to travel histories, most of the infections originated in Africa and the Middle East, but also in India. Most of the isolates also were resistant to extended-spectrum cephalosporins, and resistance to carbapenems, aminoglycosides, trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole and azithromycin also was observed.

“National and international health, food and agricultural authorities need to recognize rapidly the potential risk to public health posed by ciprofloxacin-resistant Kentucky ST198-X1,” the researchers wrote.

Disclosure: The researchers report no relevant financial disclosures.