• Association between genotype and drug resistance profiles of Mycobacterium tuberculosis strains circulating in China in a national drug resistance survey.

      Zhou, Yang; van den Hof, Susan; Wang, Shengfen; Pang, Yu; Zhao, Bing; Xia, Hui; Anthony, Richard; Ou, Xichao; Li, Qiang; Zheng, Yang; et al. (2017)
      We describe the population structure of a representative collection of 3,133 Mycobacterium tuberculosis isolates, collected within the framework of a national resistance survey from 2007 in China. Genotyping data indicate that the epidemic strains in China can be divided into seven major complexes, of which 92% belonged to the East Asian (mainly Beijing strains) or the Euro-American lineage. The epidemic Beijing strains in China are closely related to the Beijing B0/W148 strain earlier described in Russia and a large cluster of these strains has spread national wide. The density of Beijing strains is high in the whole of China (average 70%), but the highest prevalence was found North of the Yellow river. The Euro-American lineage consists of three sublineages (sublineage_1, 2, and 3) and is more prevalent in the South. Beijing lineage showed the highest cluster rate of 48% and a significantly higher level of resistance to rifampicin (14%, p<0.001), ethambutol (9%, p = 0.001), and ofloxacin (5%, p = 0.011). Within the Euro-American Lineage, sublineage_3 revealed the highest cluster rate (28%) and presented a significantly elevated level of resistance to streptomycin (44%, p<0.001). Our findings suggest that standardised treatment in this region may have contributed to the successful spread of certain strains: sublineage_3 in the Euro-American lineage may have thrived when streptomycin was used without rifampicin for treatment, while later under DOTS based treatment, in which rifampicin plays a key role, Beijing lineage appears to be spreading.