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Complete genome sequence of methicillin-sensitive Staphylococcus aureus containing a heterogeneic staphylococcal cassette chromosome element

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  • Dezhi Li
  • Yanan Chu
  • Lufeng Ren
  • Xingang Li
  • Lina Yuan
  • Yu Kang
  • Wei Zhang
  • Yu Yang
  • Xumin Wang
  • J Kenneth Baillie
  • Jun Yu
  • Zhancheng Gao

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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)268-274
Number of pages7
JournalScience China. Life sciences
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2013


Staphylococcus aureus is a common human bacterium that sometimes becomes pathogenic, causing serious infections. A key feature of S. aureus is its ability to acquire resistance to antibiotics. The presence of the staphylococcal cassette chromosome (SCC) element in serotypes of S. aureus has been confirmed using multiplex PCR assays. The SCC element is the only vector known to carry the mecA gene, which encodes methicillin resistance in S. aureus infections. Here, we report the genome sequence of a novel methicillin-sensitive S. aureus (MSSA) strain: SCC-like MSSA463. This strain was originally erroneously serotyped as methicillin-resistant S. aureus in a clinical laboratory using multiplex PCR methods. We sequenced the genome of SCC-like MSSA463 using pyrosequencing techniques and compared it with known genome sequences of other S. aureus isolates. An open reading frame (CZ049; AB037671) was identified downstream of attL and attR inverted repeat sequences. Our results suggest that a lateral gene transfer occurred between S. aureus and other organisms, partially changing S. aureus infectivity. We propose that attL and attR inverted repeats in S. aureus serve as frequent insertion sites for exogenous genes.

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