Skip to main content

Research Repository

Advanced Search

A novel hybrid SCCmec-mecC region in Staphylococcus sciuri

Harrison, Ewan M.; Paterson, Gavin K.; Holden, Matthew T. G.; Ba, Xiaoliang; Rolo, Joana; Morgan, Fiona J. E.; Pichon, Bruno; Kearns, Angela; Zadoks, Ruth N.; Peacock, Sharon J.; Parkhill, Julian; Holmes, Mark A.


Ewan M. Harrison

Gavin K. Paterson

Matthew T. G. Holden

Xiaoliang Ba

Joana Rolo

Fiona J. E. Morgan

Bruno Pichon

Angela Kearns

Ruth N. Zadoks

Sharon J. Peacock

Julian Parkhill

Mark A. Holmes


Objectives Methicillin resistance in Staphylococcus spp. results from the expression of an alternative penicillin-binding protein 2a (encoded by mecA) with a low affinity for β-lactam antibiotics. Recently, a novel variant of mecA known as mecC (formerly mecALGA251) was identified in Staphylococcus aureus isolates from both humans and animals. In this study, we identified two Staphylococcus sciuri subsp. carnaticus isolates from bovine infections that harbour three different mecA homologues: mecA, mecA1 and mecC. Methods We subjected the two isolates to whole-genome sequencing to further understand the genetic context of the mec-containing region. We also used PCR and RT–PCR to investigate the excision and expression of the SCCmec element and mec genes, respectively. Results Whole-genome sequencing revealed a novel hybrid SCCmec region at the orfX locus consisting of a class E mec complex (mecI-mecR1-mecC1-blaZ) located immediately downstream of a staphylococcal cassette chromosome mec (SCCmec) type VII element. A second SCCmec attL site (attL2), which was imperfect, was present downstream of the mecC region. PCR analysis of stationary-phase cultures showed that both the SCCmec type VII element and a hybrid SCCmec-mecC element were capable of excision from the genome and forming a circular intermediate. Transcriptional analysis showed that mecC and mecA, but not mecA1, were both expressed in liquid culture supplemented with oxacillin. Conclusions Overall, this study further highlights that a range of staphylococcal species harbour the mecC gene and furthers the view that coagulase-negative staphylococci associated with animals may act as reservoirs of antibiotic resistance genes for more pathogenic staphylococcal species.


Harrison, E. M., Paterson, G. K., Holden, M. T. G., Ba, X., Rolo, J., Morgan, F. J. E., …Holmes, M. A. (2014). A novel hybrid SCCmec-mecC region in Staphylococcus sciuri. The journal of antimicrobial chemotherapy, 69(4), 911-918.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Oct 16, 2013
Online Publication Date Dec 2, 2013
Publication Date Apr 1, 2014
Deposit Date Jun 23, 2015
Publicly Available Date Jun 23, 2015
Journal Journal of antimicrobial chemotherapy
Print ISSN 0305-7453
Electronic ISSN 1460-2091
Publisher Oxford University Press
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 69
Issue 4
Pages 911-918
Keywords β-lactams, MRSA, mecA
Public URL
Publisher URL
Additional Information Copy of article first published in: Journal of antimicrobial chemotherapy, 2014, v.69, issue 4


Article.pdf (475 Kb)

Publisher Licence URL

Copyright Statement
© The Authors 2013. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the British Society for Antimicrobial Chemotherapy. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License ( 3.0/), which permits unrestricted reuse, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

You might also like

Downloadable Citations