Species identities and antimicrobial susceptibilities of corynebacteria isolated from various clinical sources

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Over a 14-month period, 415 clinical isolates of coryneform gram-positive rods were recovered from various sources and identified to the species level according to recent identification schemes.Corynebacterium urealyticum, Corynebacterium striatum, Corynebacterium amycolatum, andCorynebacterium jeikeium predominated, accounting for 63% of all isolates.Corynebacterium accolens, Corynebacterium striatum, Corynebacterium argentoratense, Corynebacterium propinquum andCorynebacterium pseudodiphtheriticum were mostly recovered from the respiratory tract, whereasCorynebacterium afermentans, CDC group G, andCorynebacterium jeikeium were mainly isolated from blood. None of the isolates was identified asCorynebacterium diphtheriae orCorynebacterium xerosis. Ampicillin resistance was detected inCorynebacterium jeikeium (96%) andCorynebacterium urealyticum (99%) and varied amongCorynebacterium amycolatum (56%) and CDC group G (26%). These data emphasize the need for an accurate identification of coryneform organisms at the species level and for antimicrobial susceptibility testing of these organisms.