Journal Article

Epidemiological characteristics and molecular basis of fluoroquinolone-resistant <i>Neisseria gonorrhoeae</i> strains isolated in Korea and nearby countries

Dongeun Yong, Tae Sook Kim, Jong Rak Choi, Jong Hwa Yum, Kyungwon Lee, Yunsop Chong, Hee-Bok Oh, Tiffany Shultz and John W. Tapsall

in Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy

Published on behalf of British Society for Antimicrobial Chemotherapy

Volume 54, issue 2, pages 451-455
Published in print August 2004 | ISSN: 0305-7453
Published online August 2004 | e-ISSN: 1460-2091 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/jac/dkh345
Epidemiological characteristics and molecular basis of fluoroquinolone-resistant Neisseria gonorrhoeae strains isolated in Korea and nearby countries

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Objectives: This study was performed to examine the cause of the increase in quinolone-resistant Neisseria gonorrhoeae (QRNG) observed in Korea.

Methods: The antimicrobial susceptibilities of 190 isolates of gonococci from Korea in 2000 were examined by NCCLS methods, and subsets of these isolates underwent mutation analysis of the quinolone resistance-determining regions (QRDRs) of gyrA and parC. Molecular epidemiological characterization of 25 Korean isolates and 54 isolates from overseas was performed by pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) and the results compared.

Results: Most (172, 90.5%) of the 190 gonococci tested displayed reduced susceptibility to ciprofloxacin. All strains with high-level ciprofloxacin resistance (ciprofloxacin MIC ≥ 4 mg/L) contained a double amino acid alteration at the 91 and 95 positions in the QRDR of GyrA and a single alteration in ParC. PFGE types of high-level QRNG in Korea were mostly different from those of other nearby countries.

Conclusions: These results suggest that the observed increase in ciprofloxacin-resistant isolates is due to the mutation and spread of Korean multiclonal isolates rather than importation from overseas.

Keywords: N. gonorrhoeae; pulsed-field gel electrophoresis; ciprofloxacin; resistance; QRDRs

Journal Article.  2525 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Medical Oncology ; Critical Care

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