Characterization of Staphylococcus aureus isolates from pediatric patients with cystic fibrosis

Ying Liu, Jiang Zhang, Dengke Zhong, Lu Ji, Junshu Yang, James Phillips, Yinduo Ji

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11 Scopus citations


Staphylococcus aureus is one of the major respiratory pathogens associated with cystic fibrosis (CF) patients. In this study, we collected sputum and isolated fifty S. aureus isolates from CF patients with the median age of 9.5 years old. Then we determined the profiles of these isolates by antibiotic susceptibility testing, examining their cytotoxicity and ability to internalize into an epithelial cell line (A549), as well as multiple loci sequencing typing. Predominant CF S. aureus isolates were resistant to penicillin; however, these isolates were sensitive to various antibiotics, such as vancomycin and minocycline. Different CF S. aureus isolates showed distinct cytotoxic activities, and 90 % of CF S. aureus isolates possessed the enterotoxin genes, sea and hlg. Moreover, we found that multiple different CF S. aureus isolates appeared to have the distinct capacity of invading A549 cells. ST5 (14 %), ST30 (14 %), and ST8 (10 %) were prevalent ST types in these isolates. Further analysis revealed that ST5 and ST30 isolates were less toxic than ST8 and ST15 isolates, and that the ST5, ST15, ST59, and ST87 types of CF S. aureus were less capable of invading A549 cells. Our results suggest that the ST typing method may be useful in predicting cytotoxicity and the invading capacity of S. aureus isolates from patients with CF.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number162
JournalWorld Journal of Microbiology and Biotechnology
Issue number10
StatePublished - Oct 1 2016

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This study was funded by Mayo Clinic Internal grant (James Phillips), NIH grant AI078951 (Yinduo Ji) and Shanghai Vocational College of Agriculture and Forestry scholarship (Ying Liu and Dengke Zhong).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2016, Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht.


  • Cystic fibrosis
  • Cytotoxicity
  • Invasion
  • MLST
  • Staphylococcus aureus


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