Antibiotics (Basel). 2021 Feb 19;10(2):206. doi: 10.3390/antibiotics10020206.
Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) have been a major public health concern in humans. Among MRSA, livestock-associated (LA)-MRSA strains have always been associated with exposure to livestock or their products and have emerged in different countries globally. Although studies have identified LA-MRSA from healthy pigs and pork in Thailand, prevalence in slaughtered pigs is still unknown. In addition, there are few reports on the epidemiology and molecular characteristics of LA-MRSA in Thailand. Hence, this is the first report investigating the epidemiology and molecular characteristics of MRSA in individual slaughtered pigs and pork in Thailand. A total of 204 nasal swab and 116 retailed pork samples were collected from three slaughterhouses and four fresh markets, respectively. Individual samples were used for screening for MRSA and obtained isolates were examined for drug- resistance profiling for 12 antimicrobial agents of 10 drug classes. In addition, SCCmec typing and multi-locus sequence typing were conducted to obtain genotype profiles. MRSA were isolated from 11 and 52 nasal swab and pork samples, respectively. The prevalence was significantly higher in the pork than in the nasal swab samples (p-value < 0.05). A high prevalence of ST9-SCCmecIX and ST398-SCCmecV with high-level antimicrobial resistance from markets and slaughterhouses indicated the spreading of MRSA with these genotypes in the Thai swine processing chains and suggested the need for further investigation to determine a control.