The heterogeneity of endemic community pediatric group A streptococcal pharyngeal isolates and their relationship to invasive isolates

Heather A. Haukness, Robert R Tanz, Richard B. Thomson, Deirdre K. Pierry, Edward L. Kaplan, Bernard Beall, Dwight Johnson, Nancy P. Hoe, James M. Musser, Stanford T Shulman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

47 Scopus citations

Abstract

By use of molecular techniques, the genetic heterogeneity of 63 community pediatric pharyngeal group A streptococcal (GAS) isolates circulating within a 3-week period were compared with 17 contemporaneous invasive pediatric isolates. Pharyngitis isolates represented 16 pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) patterns with 12 emm serotypes, and invasive isolates represented 10 PFGE patterns with 9 emm serotypes. One-fourth of the pharyngeal isolates (16/63) were identical to at least 1 invasive isolate; conversely, 10 (59%) of 17 invasive isolates were identical to at least 1 pharyngeal strain, sic allele analysis of emm1 strains demonstrated additional heterogeneity and overlap. More pharyngeal (71%) than invasive isolates (35%) were positive for both speA and speC (P < .02). Many pharyngitis GAS strains circulate simultaneously. Most invasive pediatric GAS strains are identical to acute pharyngitis strains; thus, childhood pharyngitis is a major reservoir for strains with invasive potential. Pharyngeal isolates were more likely to be speA and speC positive than were the invasive isolates.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)915-920
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Infectious Diseases
Volume185
Issue number7
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 1 2002

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Infectious Diseases

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