What is Staphylococcus aureus?
Staphylococcus aureus is a Gram-positive pathogen that is part of the normal flora on the skin and upper respiratory tract. It is capable of causing a wide range of infections such as endocarditis, food poisoning, cellulitis, toxic shock syndrome, skin and soft tissue infections, bone and joint infections, pneumonia and bloodstream infections. This is because it has the ability to express multiple virulence factors and harbour multiple antibiotic resistance genes. S aureus strains may not always be resistant to antibiotics but they can acquire resistance. Cloxacillin is an antibiotic that has been used to treat infections caused by S. aureus and this has resulted in the emergence of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA). This pathogen can cause community- and healthcare-associated infections (HAIs).