Livestock-associated MRSA in household members of pig farmers: Transmission and dynamics of carriage, a prospective cohort study

B.A.G.L. Van Cleef, B.H.B. Van Benthem, E.J.M. Verkade, M.M.L. Van Rijen, M.F.Q. Kluytmans-Van Den Bergh, Haitske Graveland, Thijs Bosch, K.M.H.W. Verstappen, J.A. Wagenaar, M.E.H. Bos, Dick Heederik, J.A.J.W. Kluytmans

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Abstract

This prospective cohort study describes carriage of livestock-associated methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (LA-MRSA) in household members from 49 farrowing pig farms in the Netherlands (2010-2011). Of 171 household members, 4% were persistent MRSA nasal carriers, and the MRSA prevalence on any given sampling moment was 10% (range 7-11%). Working in the stables (of which 98% was MRSA-positive, prevalence ratio (PR) = 2.11 per 10 hours), working with sows (PR=1.97), and living with an MRSA-positive pig farmer (PR=4.63) were significant determinants for MRSA carriage. Significant protective factors were carriage of methicillin-susceptible Staphylococcus aureus (MSSA) (PR=0.50), and wearing a facemask when working in the stables (37% decreased prevalence). All MRSA strains during the study period were known livestock-associated types. The bacteriophage φ3 was not found in household members. Transmission from pigs and the environment appeared to be important determinants; human-to-human transmission could not sufficiently be differentiated. Wearing a facemask when working in the stables and carriage of MSSA are potential interventional targets.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere0127190
Number of pages13
JournalPLoS ONE
Volume10
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2015

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