Dirty Money: Toxigenic and Methacillin-Resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) from used banknotes

Original article


Khalifa Sifaw Ghenghesh, Najat M. Saed, Abdulmulla EL-Ghodban, Amal Rahouma,Salaheddin Abeid

Department of Medical Microbiology, Faculty of Medicine, Tripoli-LibyaDepartment of Microbiology, Faulty of Science, Eotos Lorand University, Budapest-Hungary

JMJ Vol. 1, No. 2 (November 2001): 54-56


Background: Staphylococcus aureus is well established as an important cause of nosocomial and community-acquired infections the role of contaminated inanimate articles of common use in the community, particularly bank notes, in the transmission of S. aureus is not known.
Materials and methods: included in the study 166 used bank notes obtained from different sources and 31 new bank notes. Organisms were isolated from each bank note and then identified using standard bacteriological procedures. Isolates identified as S. aureus were tested for their susceptibility to antibiotics using the disc diffusion method and for their ability to produce staphylococcal enterotoxins (A, B, C and D) and toxic shock syndrome toxin (TSST-1) using specific kits.
Results: S. aureus was isolated from 61 (37%) used banknotes and from 1(3%) new banknotes. the difference in the isolation rates of S. aureus from the used and new bank notes is statistically significant (p<0.001, Chi-squares test). Of the 50 S.aureus isolates tested for their antibiotic susceptibility, 72% were resistant to ampicillin, 4% to Methacillin, 44% to fucidic acid, 36%to cephaloridine, 24% to erythromycin, 26% to tetracycline, 38% to trimethoprim-sulphamethoxazol, 16% to Chloramphenicol and 2% to neomycin and all were sensitive to gentamicin and vancomycin. Furthermore, of 20 isolates examined only 1(5%) was enterotoxigenic (produced toxin B, SEB) and 6 (30%) produced TSST-1. Conclusion: The results obtained show that used bank notes may be considered as a method of transmission of toxigenic and MRSA in the community. Key words: Methacillin-resistant staphylococcus aureus, banknotes, Keywords: Methacillin-resistant staphylococcus aureus, banknotes, Link/DOI: http://www.jmj.org.ly/modules.php?name=News&file=article&sid=1202