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Publication Date


Publication Title

Microbiology Spectrum







Publisher Name

American Society for Microbiology


Infections caused by antibiotic-resistant Staphylococcus are a global concern. This is true in the Middle East, where increasingly resistant Staphylococcus aureus and Staphylococcus haemolyticus strains have been detected. While extensive surveys have revealed the prevalence of infections caused by antibiotic-resistant staphylococci in Europe, Asia, and North America, the population structure of antibiotic-resistant staphylococci recovered from patients and clinical settings in Egypt remains uncharacterized. We performed whole-genome sequencing of 56 S. aureus and 10 S. haemolyticus isolates from Alexandria Main University Hospital; 46 of the S. aureus genomes and all 10 of the S. haemolyticus genomes carry mecA, which confers methicillin resistance. Supplemented with additional publicly available genomes from the other parts of the Middle East (34 S. aureus and 6 S. haemolyticus), we present the largest genomic study to date of staphylococcal isolates from the Middle East. These genomes include 20 S. aureus multilocus sequence types (MLST), including 3 new ones. They also include 9 S. haemolyticus MLSTs, including 1 new one. Phylogenomic analyses of each species’ core genome largely mirrored those of the MLSTs, irrespective of geographical origin. The hospital-acquired spa t037/ST239-SCCmec III/MLST CC8 clone represented the largest clade, comprising 22% of the S. aureus isolates. Like S. aureus genome surveys of other regions, these isolates from the Middle East have an open pangenome, a strong indicator of gene exchange of virulence factors and antibiotic resistance genes with other reservoirs. Our genome analyses will inform antibiotic stewardship and infection control plans in the Middle East.


85137135850 (Scopus)

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.