Skip directly to site content Skip directly to page options Skip directly to A-Z link Skip directly to A-Z link Skip directly to A-Z link
Volume 21, Number 9—September 2015

Mycobacterium abscessus Complex Infections in Humans

Meng-Rui Lee, Wang-Huei Sheng, Chien-Ching Hung, Chong-Jen Yu, Li-Na Lee, and Po-Ren HsuehComments to Author 
Author affiliations: National Taiwan University Hospital Hsin-Chu Branch, Hsin-Chu, Taiwan (M.-R. Lee, W.-H. Sheng, C.-C. Hung, C.-J. Yu, L.-N. Lee, P.-R. Hsueh); National Taiwan University Hospital, Taipei, Taiwan (M.-R. Lee, W.-H. Sheng, C.-C. Hung, C.-J. Yu, L.-N. Lee, P.-R. Hsueh)

Main Article

Table 1

Summary of recent data on the resistance of Mycobacterium abscessus complex bacteria to different antimicrobial agents*

Study authors (reference), species No. isolates Antimicrobial drug, no. resistant isolates/no. tested (%)
Lee et al. (34)
M. abscessus subsp. abscessus 202 48/202 (24) NA 184/202 (91) 167/202 (83) NA 25/202 (12) NA
M. abscessus subsp. massiliense
15/199 (8)
174/199 (87)
149/199 (75)
12/199 (6)
Koh et al. (18)
M. abscessus subsp. abscessus 64 3/64 (5) 53/64 (83) 37/64 (58) 30/64 (47) 0/64 3/64 (5) 27/62 (44)
M. abscessus subsp. massiliense
3/79 (4)
58/79 (73)
48/79 (61)
42/79 (53)
1/79 (1)
6/79 (8)
50/75 (67)
Huang et al. (35)
M. abscessus complex
3/40 (8)
37/40 (93)
36/40 (90)
31/40 (78)
27/40 (68)
2/40 (5)
35/40 (88)
Brown-Elliott et al. (36)
M. abscessus complex
0% (0/37)
29/37 (78)
29/37 (78)
7/37 (19)
Broda et al. (37)
M. abscessus complex
22/58 (38)
57/58 (98)
55/58 (95)
55/58 (95)
16/58 (28)
10/58 (17)
56/58 (97)
Zhuo et al. (38)
M. abscessus complex
10/70 (14)
56/70 (80)
3/70 (4)
15/70 (21)
M. abscessus complex 749 104/749 (13.9) 205/241 (85.1) 619/749 (82.6) 503/679 (74.1) 47/311 (15.1) 58/749 (7.7) 190/342 (55.6)
M. abscessus subsp. abscessus 266 51/266 (19.4) 53/64 (83.0) 221/266 (83.1) 197/266 (74.1) 0/64 28/266 (10.5) 27/62 (44.0)
M. abscessus subsp. massiliense 278 18/278 (6.5) 58/79 (73.4) 222/278 (79.8) 191/278 (68.7) 1/79 (1.0) 18/278 (6.5) 50/75 (66.7)

*AMK, amikacin; CIP, ciprofloxacin; CLR, clarithromycin; DOX, doxycycline; FOX, cefoxitin; IPM, imipenem; MXF, moxifloxacin; NA, not available.

Main Article

  1. Brown-Elliott  BA, Wallace  RJ Jr. Clinical and taxonomic status of pathogenic nonpigmented or late-pigmenting rapidly growing mycobacteria. Clin Microbiol Rev. 2002;15:71646. DOIPubMedGoogle Scholar
  2. Griffith  DE, Aksamit  T, Brown-Elliott  BA, Catanzaro  A, Daley  C, Gordin  F, An official ATS/IDSA statement: diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of nontuberculous mycobacterial diseases. Am J Respir Crit Care Med. 2007;175:367416. DOIPubMedGoogle Scholar
  3. Marras  TK, Mendelson  D, Marchand-Austin  A, May  K, Jamieson  FB. Pulmonary nontuberculous mycobacterial disease, Ontario, Canada, 1998–2010. Emerg Infect Dis. 2013;19:188991. DOIPubMedGoogle Scholar
  4. Lai  CC, Tan  CK, Chou  CH, Hsu  HL, Liao  CH, Huang  YT, Increasing incidence of nontuberculous mycobacteria, Taiwan, 2000–2008. Emerg Infect Dis. 2010;16:2946. DOIPubMedGoogle Scholar
  5. Nessar  R, Cambau  E, Reyrat  JM, Murray  A, Gicquel  B. Mycobacterium abscessus: a new antibiotic nightmare. J Antimicrob Chemother. 2012;67:8108. DOIPubMedGoogle Scholar
  6. Leao  SC, Tortoli  E, Euzeby  JP, Garcia  MJ. Proposal that Mycobacterium massiliense and Mycobacterium bolletii be united and reclassified as Mycobacterium abscessus subsp. bolletii comb. nov., designation of Mycobacterium abscessus subsp. abscessus subsp. nov. and emended description of Mycobacterium abscessus. Int J Syst Evol Microbiol. 2011;61:23113. DOIPubMedGoogle Scholar
  7. Benwill  JL, Wallace  RJ Jr. Mycobacterium abscessus: challenges in diagnosis and treatment. Curr Opin Infect Dis. 2014;27:50610. DOIPubMedGoogle Scholar
  8. Choo  SW, Wee  WY, Ngeow  YF, Mitchell  W, Tan  JL, Wong  GJ, Genomic reconnaissance of clinical isolates of emerging human pathogen Mycobacterium abscessus reveals high evolutionary potential. Sci Rep. 2014;4:4061.
  9. Cho  YJ, Yi  H, Chun  J, Cho  SN, Daley  CL, Koh  WJ, The genome sequence of ‘Mycobacterium massiliense’ strain CIP 108297 suggests the independent taxonomic status of the Mycobacterium abscessus complex at the subspecies level. PLoS ONE. 2013;8:e81560. DOIPubMedGoogle Scholar
  10. Sassi  M, Drancourt  M. Genome analysis reveals three genomospecies in Mycobacterium abscessus. BMC Genomics. 2014;15:359. DOIPubMedGoogle Scholar
  11. Heydari  H, Wee  WY, Lokanathan  N, Hari  R, Mohamed Yusoff  A, Beh  CY, MabsBase: a Mycobacterium abscessus genome and annotation database. PLoS ONE. 2013;8:e62443. DOIPubMedGoogle Scholar
  12. Teng  SH, Chen  CM, Lee  MR, Lee  TF, Chien  KY, Teng  LJ, Matrix-assisted laser desorption ionization–time of flight mass spectrometry can accurately differentiate between Mycobacterium masilliense (M. abscessus subspecies bolletti) and M. abscessus (sensu stricto). J Clin Microbiol. 2013;51:31136. DOIPubMedGoogle Scholar
  13. Prevots  DR, Shaw  PA, Strickland  D, Jackson  LA, Raebel  MA, Blosky  MA, Nontuberculous mycobacterial lung disease prevalence at four integrated health care delivery systems. Am J Respir Crit Care Med. 2010;182:9706. DOIPubMedGoogle Scholar
  14. Lee  MR, Yang  CY, Chang  KP, Keng  LT, Yen  DH, Wang  JY, Factors associated with lung function decline in patients with non-tuberculous mycobacterial pulmonary disease. PLoS ONE. 2013;8:e58214. DOIPubMedGoogle Scholar
  15. Levy  I, Grisaru-Soen  G, Lerner-Geva  L, Kerem  E, Blau  H, Bentur  L, Multicenter cross-sectional study of nontuberculous mycobacterial infections among cystic fibrosis patients, Israel. Emerg Infect Dis. 2008;14:37884. DOIPubMedGoogle Scholar
  16. Jeon  K, Kwon  OJ, Lee  NY, Kim  BJ, Kook  YH, Lee  SH, Antibiotic treatment of Mycobacterium abscessus lung disease: a retrospective analysis of 65 patients. Am J Respir Crit Care Med. 2009;180:896902 . DOIPubMedGoogle Scholar
  17. Jarand  J, Levin  A, Zhang  L, Huitt  G, Mitchell  JD, Daley  CL. Clinical and microbiologic outcomes in patients receiving treatment for Mycobacterium abscessus pulmonary disease. Clin Infect Dis. 2011;52:56571. DOIPubMedGoogle Scholar
  18. Koh  WJ, Jeon  K, Lee  NY, Kim  BJ, Kook  YH, Lee  SH, Clinical significance of differentiation of Mycobacterium massiliense from Mycobacterium abscessus. Am J Respir Crit Care Med. 2011;183:40510. DOIPubMedGoogle Scholar
  19. Kothavade  RJ, Dhurat  RS, Mishra  SN, Kothavade  UR. Clinical and laboratory aspects of the diagnosis and management of cutaneous and subcutaneous infections caused by rapidly growing mycobacteria. Eur J Clin Microbiol Infect Dis. 2013;32:16188 . DOIPubMedGoogle Scholar
  20. Nakanaga  K, Hoshino  Y, Era  Y, Matsumoto  K, Kanazawa  Y, Tomita  A, Multiple cases of cutaneous Mycobacterium massiliense infection in a “hot spa” in Japan. J Clin Microbiol. 2011;49:6137. DOIPubMedGoogle Scholar
  21. Lee  MR, Cheng  A, Lee  YC, Yang  CY, Lai  CC, Huang  YT, CNS infections caused by Mycobacterium abscessus complex: clinical features and antimicrobial susceptibilities of isolates. J Antimicrob Chemother. 2012;67:2225. DOIPubMedGoogle Scholar
  22. Shields  RK, Clancy  CJ, Minces  LR, Shigemura  N, Kwak  EJ, Silveira  FP, Epidemiology and outcomes of deep surgical site infections following lung transplantation. Am J Transplant. 2013;13:213745. DOIPubMedGoogle Scholar
  23. Browne  SK, Burbelo  PD, Chetchotisakd  P, Suputtamongkol  Y, Kiertiburanakul  S, Shaw  PA, Adult-onset immunodeficiency in Thailand and Taiwan. N Engl J Med. 2012;367:72534. DOIPubMedGoogle Scholar
  24. El Helou  G, Viola  GM, Hachem  R, Han  XY, Raad  II. Rapidly growing mycobacterial bloodstream infections. Lancet Infect Dis. 2013;13:16674. DOIPubMedGoogle Scholar
  25. El Helou  G, Hachem  R, Viola  GM, El Zakhem  A, Chaftari  AM, Jiang  Y, Management of rapidly growing mycobacterial bacteremia in cancer patients. Clin Infect Dis. 2013;56:8436. DOIPubMedGoogle Scholar
  26. Lee  MR, Ko  JC, Liang  SK, Lee  SW, Yen  DH, Hsueh  PR. Bacteraemia caused by Mycobacterium abscessus subsp. abscessus and M. abscessus subsp. bolletii: clinical features and susceptibilities of the isolates. Int J Antimicrob Agents. 2014;43:43841. DOIPubMedGoogle Scholar
  27. Girgis  DO, Karp  CL, Miller  D. Ocular infections caused by non-tuberculous mycobacteria: update on epidemiology and management. Clin Experiment Ophthalmol. 2012;40:46775. DOIPubMedGoogle Scholar
  28. Moorthy  RS, Valluri  S, Rao  NA. Nontuberculous mycobacterial ocular and adnexal infections. Surv Ophthalmol. 2012;57:20235. DOIPubMedGoogle Scholar
  29. Liu  R, To  KK, Teng  JL, Choi  GK, Mok  KY, Law  KI, Mycobacterium abscessus bacteremia after receipt of intravenous infusate of cytokine-induced killer cell therapy for body beautification and health boosting. Clin Infect Dis. 2013;57:98191. DOIPubMedGoogle Scholar
  30. Bryant  JM, Grogono  DM, Greaves  D, Foweraker  J, Roddick  I, Inns  T, Whole-genome sequencing to identify transmission of Mycobacterium abscessus between patients with cystic fibrosis: a retrospective cohort study. Lancet. 2013;381:155160. DOIPubMedGoogle Scholar
  31. Viana-Niero  C, Lima  KV, Lopes  ML, Rabello  MC, Marsola  LR, Brilhante  VC, Molecular characterization of Mycobacterium massiliense and Mycobacterium bolletii in isolates collected from outbreaks of infections after laparoscopic surgeries and cosmetic procedures. J Clin Microbiol. 2008;46:8505. DOIPubMedGoogle Scholar
  32. Clinical and Laboratory Standards Institute (CLSI). Susceptibility testing of mycobacteria, nocardiae, and other aerobic actinomycetes. Approved standard—second edition. CLSI document M24–A2. Wayne (PA): The Institute; 2011.
  33. Adékambi  T, Drancourt  M. Mycobacterium bolletii respiratory infections. Emerg Infect Dis. 2009;15:3025. DOIPubMedGoogle Scholar
  34. Lee  SH, Yoo  HK, Kim  SH, Koh  WJ, Kim  CK, Park  YK, The drug resistance profile of Mycobacterium abscessus group strains from Korea. Ann Lab Med. 2014;34:31–7.
  35. Huang  YC, Liu  MF, Shen  GH, Lin  CF, Kao  CC, Liu  PY, Clinical outcome of Mycobacterium abscessus infection and antimicrobial susceptibility testing. J Microbiol Immunol Infect. 2010;43:4016. DOIPubMedGoogle Scholar
  36. Brown-Elliott  BA, Mann  LB, Hail  D, Whitney  C, Wallace  RJ Jr. Antimicrobial susceptibility of nontuberculous mycobacteria from eye infections. Cornea. 2012;31:9006. DOIPubMedGoogle Scholar
  37. Broda  A, Jebbari  H, Beaton  K, Mitchell  S, Drobniewski  F. Comparative drug resistance of Mycobacterium abscessus and M. chelonae isolates from patients with and without cystic fibrosis in the United Kingdom. J Clin Microbiol. 2013;51:21723. DOIPubMedGoogle Scholar
  38. Zhuo  FL, Sun  ZG, Li  CY, Liu  ZH, Cai  L, Zhou  C, Clinical isolates of Mycobacterium abscessus in Guangzhou area most possibly from the environmental infection showed variable susceptibility. Chin Med J (Engl). 2013;126:187883 .PubMedGoogle Scholar
  39. Nash  KA, Brown-Elliott  BA, Wallace  RJ Jr. A novel gene, erm(41), confers inducible macrolide resistance to clinical isolates of Mycobacterium abscessus but is absent from Mycobacterium chelonae. Antimicrob Agents Chemother. 2009;53:136776. DOIPubMedGoogle Scholar
  40. Thomson  RM, Carter  R, Tolson  C, Coulter  C, Huygens  F, Hargreaves  M. Factors associated with the isolation of nontuberculous mycobacteria (NTM) from a large municipal water system in Brisbane, Australia. BMC Microbiol. 2013;13:89. DOIPubMedGoogle Scholar

Main Article

Page created: August 14, 2015
Page updated: August 14, 2015
Page reviewed: August 14, 2015
The conclusions, findings, and opinions expressed by authors contributing to this journal do not necessarily reflect the official position of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the Public Health Service, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, or the authors' affiliated institutions. Use of trade names is for identification only and does not imply endorsement by any of the groups named above.