Volume 96, Issue 5
  • ISSN: 0002-9637
  • E-ISSN: 1476-1645



In Saudi Arabia, there were no nationwide screening studies conducted so far to determine the aminoglycoside and fluoroquinolone resistance among multidrug-resistant tuberculosis (MDR-TB) isolates. Therefore, as the first attempt in the country, a retrospective analysis has been conducted on a nationwide collection of 2,956 clinical isolates screened with phenotypic drug susceptibility testing to define MDR-TB. Enrolled MDR-TB isolates were subjected to second-line drug susceptibility testing, detection of mutations conferring resistance to aminoglycosides and fluoroquinolone, followed by 24-loci mycobacterial interspersed repetitive unit–variable number of tandem repeat typing and spoligotyping. Overall, 83 isolates were identified as MDR-TB, and 13 (15.7%) isolates showed resistance to second-line drugs. Moxifloxacin (low level) showed higher resistant rates (10.8%) followed by ofloxacin (7.2%), capreomycin (3.6%), kanamycin (3.6%), and amikacin (2.4%). Overall fluoroquinolone resistance was 12%, whereas aminoglycoside resistance was 7.2%. Predominant mutations conferring resistance to fluoroquinolone were found in A90V and D94G, whereas aminoglycoside resistance was observed only with gene A1401G mutation. The corresponding strain lineages predominated with Indo-Oceanic and East-African Indian origin. Interestingly, none of the isolates with second-line drug resistance was defined as extensively drug-resistant TB (XDR-TB). Surprisingly, many isolates (50.6%) were panresistant to first-line drugs. Saudi Arabia faces considerable burden of fluoroquinolone- and aminoglycoside-resistant MDR-TB. Higher incidence of panresistant MDR-TB reveals a threat for the emergence of XDR-TB strains in the near future.

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  • Received : 17 Jul 2016
  • Accepted : 12 Dec 2016

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