Tropical Animal Health and Production

, Volume 51, Issue 7, pp 1927–1933 | Cite as

A cross-sectional study of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus at the equine-human interface

  • Namra Waqar
  • Quratulain Amin
  • Tariq Munir
  • Muhammad Sohaib Ikram
  • Naveed Shahzad
  • Arkim Mirza
  • Arshad Ali
  • Muhammad Imran ArshadEmail author
Regular Articles


The present study aimed at investigating the percent prevalence of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) in equines and associated personnel. A total of 150 swabs of equines and 50 nasal swab samples of associated personnel were collected. These samples were processed in mannitol salt broth for enrichment. A total of 175 nasal swab samples changed the broth color from pink to yellow which were detected as samples containing S. aureus. These samples were processed further on specific media, namely mannitol salt agar, Staph-110, and blood agar, for phenotypic and Gram’s staining–based confirmation of S. aureus isolates. Out of these 175 S. aureus–positive samples, 150 were of equine and 25 were of human origin. Identification of MRSA isolates in 175 S. aureus–positive samples was carried out by antimicrobial susceptibility testing by disc diffusion method. Results showed the presence of MRSA in 87 samples, out of which 81 samples were collected from equines and six samples from humans. Results of antibiotic testing revealed that percentage positivity of MRSA was higher (54%) in equines as compared with the associated personnel (24%). Most resistant antibiotics against MRSA isolates were oxacillin and methicillin while linezolid was found to be the most sensitive antibiotic against MRSA. In conclusion, our findings indicated prevalence of MRSA in equines and associated personnel evidencing an occupational risk of contracting MRSA from horses.


Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus Horses Human Antimicrobial susceptibility 



We thank Brooke’s Equine Hospital, Directorate of Farms, University of Agriculture Faisalabad, and Race Course Club, Lahore, for helping in the collection of samples.

Compliance with ethical standards

Ethical statement

This research work was conducted in compliance with the Institutional Biosafety and Bioethics Committee (IBBC), University of Agriculture Faisalabad. An informed consent was taken from the individuals involved in the study before sampling.

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature B.V. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute of Microbiology, Faculty of Veterinary SciencesUniversity of Agriculture FaisalabadFaisalabadPakistan
  2. 2.Department of Pathology, Faculty of Veterinary SciencesUniversity of Agriculture FaisalabadFaisalabadPakistan
  3. 3.School of Biological SciencesThe University of PunjabLahorePakistan
  4. 4.Race Course ClubLahorePakistan
  5. 5.Livestock and Dairy Development DepartmentCivil Veterinary HospitalNankana SahibPakistan

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