When good bugs go bad: Epidemiology and antimicrobial resistance profiles of corynebacterium striatum, an emerging multidrug-resistant, opportunistic pathogen

Allison Rebecca McMullen, Neil Anderson, Meghan A. Wallace, Angela Shupe, Carey Ann D. Burnham

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

13 Scopus citations


Infections with Corynebacterium striatum have been described in the literature over the last 2 decades, with the majority being bacteremia, central line infections, and occasionally, endocarditis. In recent years, the frequency of C. striatum infections appears to be increasing; a factor likely contributing to this is the increased ease and accuracy of the identification of Corynebacterium spp., including C. striatum, from clinical cultures. The objective of this study was to retrospectively characterize C. striatum isolates recovered from specimens submitted as part of routine patient care at a 1,250-bed, tertiary-care academic medical center. Multiple strain types were recovered, as demonstrated by repetitive-sequence-based PCR. Most of the strains of C. striatum characterized were resistant to antimicrobials commonly used to treat Gram-positive organisms, such as penicillin, ceftriaxone, meropenem, clindamycin, and tetracycline. The MIC50 for ceftaroline was 32 g/ml. Although there are no interpretive criteria for susceptibility with telavancin, it appeared to have potent in vitro efficacy against this species, with MIC50 and MIC90 values of 0.064 and 0.125 g/ml, respectively. Finally, as previously reported in case studies, we demonstrated rapid in vitro development of daptomycin resistance in 100% of the isolates tested (n 50), indicating that caution should be exhibited when using daptomycin for the treatment of C. striatum infections. C. striatum is an emerging, multidrug-resistant pathogen that can be associated with a variety of infection types.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere01111-17
JournalAntimicrobial agents and chemotherapy
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 2017



  • Antimicrobial agents
  • Corynebacterium
  • Corynebacterium striatum
  • Opportunistic infections
  • Susceptibility testing
  • Telavancin

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology
  • Pharmacology (medical)
  • Infectious Diseases

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