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April 1981

Transmission of Group B Streptococci: Traced by Use of Multiple Epidemiologic Markers

Author Affiliations

From the Bacterial Diseases Division, Bureau of Epidemiology (Drs Band, Clegg, and Dixon and Ms Hayes), and the Bacteriology Division, Bureau of Laboratories (Dr Facklam), Center for Disease Control, Atlanta; and the Central Public Health Laboratory (Ms Stringer), London.

Am J Dis Child. 1981;135(4):355-358. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1981.02130280045015

• During a three-week period, septicemia caused by group B Streptococcus, serotype III, developed in four infants born at a community hospital. The first infant had early-onset disease; late-onset disease that appeared, from epidemiologic data, to be nosocomial developed in the other three infants. Bacteriophage typing and antimicrobial susceptibility testing confirmed the relatedness of the isolates. A prospective study designed to differentiate between vertical and nosocomial transmission of group B Streptococcus showed that of 82 infants, 21 (26%) were culture-positive during their hospitalization, and nine of these infants (43%) had been culture-negative at birth. Although serotype III strains were recovered from four of nine infants with apparently nosocomial acquisition, none of the isolates displayed an antibiogram or bacteriophage type similar to that of the isolates involved in the recent cluster. Bacteriophage typing and antimicrobial susceptibility testing in addition to the use of serotyping may be helpful in epidemiologic studies of group B Streptococcus.

(Am J Dis Child 1981;135:355-358)

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