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Thomson R.,Gallipoli Medical Research | Tolson C.,Reference Pathology Laboratory | Huygens F.,Queensland University of Technology | Hargreaves M.,Queensland University of Technology
International Journal of Medical Microbiology | Year: 2014

Mycobacterium kansasii is a pulmonary pathogen that has been grown readily from municipal water, but rarely isolated from natural waters. A definitive link between water exposure and disease has not been demonstrated and the environmental niche for this organism is poorly understood. Strain typing of clinical isolates has revealed seven subtypes with Type 1 being highly clonal and responsible for most infections worldwide. The prevalence of other subtypes varies geographically. In this study 49 water isolates are compared with 72 patient isolates from the same geographical area (Brisbane, Australia), using automated repetitive unit PCR (Diversilab) and ITS_RFLP. The clonality of the dominant clinical strain type is again demonstrated but with rep-PCR, strain variation within this group is evident comparable with other reported methods. There is significant heterogeneity of water isolates and very few are similar or related to the clinical isolates. This suggests that if water or aerosol transmission is the mode of infection, then point source contamination likely occurs from an alternative environmental source. © 2014 Elsevier GmbH. Source


Coulter C.,Reference Pathology Laboratory
Australian Family Physician | Year: 2012

This article forms part of our Tests and results series for 2012, which aims to provide information about common tests that general practitioners order regularly. It considers areas such as indications, what to tell the patient, what the test can and cannot tell you, and interpretation of results. Source


Badry M.E.,Reference Pathology Laboratory | Morris G.,Jr.
Pediatric Infectious Disease Journal | Year: 2016

We report the detection and isolation of enterovirus D68 from the blood of a 6-year-old child in rural Haiti, who presented with high fever and clinical signs suggestive of pneumonia. On phylogenetic analysis, this Haitian isolate was virtually identical to an enterovirus D68 strain circulating in New York during the same time period. Copyright © 2016 Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc. All rights reserved. Source


Thomson R.,Gallipoli Medical Research Center | Tolson C.,Reference Pathology Laboratory | Sidjabat H.,University of Queensland | Huygens F.,Queensland University of Technology | Hargreaves M.,Queensland University of Technology
BMC Infectious Diseases | Year: 2013

Background: Mycobacterium abscessus is a rapidly growing mycobacterium responsible for progressive pulmonary disease, soft tissue and wound infections. The incidence of disease due to M. abscessus has been increasing in Queensland. In a study of Brisbane drinking water, M. abscessus was isolated from ten different locations.The aim of this study was to compare genotypically the M. abscessus isolates obtained from water to those obtained from human clinical specimens.Methods: Between 2007 and 2009, eleven isolates confirmed as M. abscessus were recovered from potable water, one strain was isolated from a rainwater tank and another from a swimming pool and two from domestic taps. Seventy-four clinical isolates referred during the same time period were available for comparison using rep-PCR strain typing (Diversilab).Results: The drinking water isolates formed two clusters with ≥97% genetic similarity (Water patterns 1 and 2). The tankwater isolate (WP4), one municipal water isolate (WP3) and the pool isolate (WP5) were distinctly different. Patient isolates formed clusters with all of the water isolates except for WP3. Further patient isolates were unrelated to the water isolates.Conclusion: The high degree of similarity between strains of M. abscessus from potable water and strains causing infection in humans from the same geographical area, strengthens the possibility that drinking water may be the source of infection in these patients. © 2013 Thomson et al.; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. Source


Thomson R.M.,Gallipoli Medical Research Center | Carter R.,Reference Pathology Laboratory | Tolson C.,Reference Pathology Laboratory | Coulter C.,Reference Pathology Laboratory | And 2 more authors.
BMC Microbiology | Year: 2013

Background: Nontuberculous mycobacteria (NTM) are normal inhabitants of a variety of environmental reservoirs including natural and municipal water. The aim of this study was to document the variety of species of NTM in potable water in Brisbane, QLD, with a specific interest in the main pathogens responsible for disease in this region and to explore factors associated with the isolation of NTM. One-litre water samples were collected from 189 routine collection sites in summer and 195 sites in winter. Samples were split, with half decontaminated with CPC 0.005%, then concentrated by filtration and cultured on 7H11 plates in MGIT tubes (winter only). Results: Mycobacteria were grown from 40.21% sites in Summer (76/189) and 82.05% sites in winter (160/195). The winter samples yielded the greatest number and variety of mycobacteria as there was a high degree of subculture overgrowth and contamination in summer. Of those samples that did yield mycobacteria in summer, the variety of species differed from those isolated in winter. The inclusion of liquid media increased the yield for some species of NTM. Species that have been documented to cause disease in humans residing in Brisbane that were also found in water include M. gordonae, M. kansasii, M. abscessus, M. chelonae, M. fortuitum complex, M. intracellulare, M. avium complex, M. flavescens, M. interjectum, M. lentiflavum, M. mucogenicum, M. simiae, M. szulgai, M. terrae. M. kansasii was frequently isolated, but M. avium and M. intracellulare (the main pathogens responsible for disease is QLD) were isolated infrequently. Distance of sampling site from treatment plant in summer was associated with isolation of NTM. Pathogenic NTM (defined as those known to cause disease in QLD) were more likely to be identified from sites with narrower diameter pipes, predominantly distribution sample points, and from sites with asbestos cement or modified PVC pipes. Conclusions: NTM responsible for human disease can be found in large urban water distribution systems in Australia. Based on our findings, additional point chlorination, maintenance of more constant pressure gradients in the system, and the utilisation of particular pipe materials should be considered. © 2013 Thomson et al.; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. Source

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