roslin scientists have shed new light on the spread of MRSA.
According to a new study by The Roslin Institute, hospitals in large cities act as breeding grounds for the superbug before it spreads to smaller hospitals.
Researchers found evidence that shows for the first time how the superbug spreads between different hospitals throughout the country. The study involved looking at the genetic make-up of more than 80 variants of a major clone of MRSA found in hospitals. Scientists were able to determine the entire genetic code of MRSA bacteria taken from infected patients.
They then identified mutations in the bug which led to their emergence of new MRSA variants and traced their spread around the country
Dr Ross Fitzgerald, of The Roslin Institute, who led the study said: “We found that variants of MRSA circulating in regional hospitals probably originated in large city hospitals. The high levels of patient traffic in large hospitals means they act as a hub for transmission between patients, who may then be transferred or treated in regional hospitals.”
Paul McAdam, first author of the paper, said: “Our findings suggest that the referral of patients to different hospitals is a major cause of MRSA transmission around the country. This knowledge could help in finding ways to prevent the spread of infections.”