Date of Award


Degree Name

Biological Sciences


College of Science

Type of Degree


Document Type


First Advisor

Charles Somerville

Second Advisor

Laura Adkins

Third Advisor

Jean Chappell


Staphylococcus aureus is one of the most dangerous human pathogens. An intensive effort to control resistant staphylococci, especially methicillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), is vital as it is the most common cause of hospitalacquired infections. During the one year study period, a total of 35 MRSA isolates were collected. Fifteen isolates were identified as hospital-acquired (HA) infections, and 20 isolates were determined to be community acquired (CA). All 15 (100%) HA-MRSA strains were resistant to clindamycin and to erythromycin. Thirteen isolates (87%) were resistant to ciprofloxacin and levofloxacin, and 12 (80%) were resistant to moxifloxacin. Of the 20 CA-MRSA isolates, 15 (75%) were resistant to erythromycin, 8 (40%) were resistant to ciprofloxacin and levofloxacin, 6 (30%) were resistant to clindamycin, 5 (25%) were resistant to moxifloxacin, 2 (10%) were resistant to tetracycline, and 1 (5%) was resistant to nitrofurantion. The patterns of resistance that MRSA isolates display can play a major role in differentiating between hospital-acquired and community-acquired MRSA strains.


Community-acquired infections


Staphylococcus aureus infections


Nosocomial infections