Drug-resistant bacteria makes its way to Japan

Kyodo

A new type of multiple-drug-resistant bacteria was detected for the first time in the nation in a man hospitalized in Chiba Prefecture last year, a team of researchers said Tuesday.

The researchers from the Chiba hospital, the National Institute of Infectious Diseases and Nagoya University identified the bacteria found in the sputum and feces of the man in his 60s as OXA-48, which is resistant to most antimicrobial drugs.

The team is urging domestic medical institutions to stay alert, as the bacteria strain is rapidly spreading, especially in Europe.

“The case does not suggest the spread of multiple-drug-resistant bacteria in Japan, as the person was infected overseas,” said an official at the health ministry’s tuberculosis and infectious disease control division. “But we will try to detect it before it spreads.”

The man appeared to have been infected with OXA-48 overseas as he was admitted to the Chiba hospital in November after undergoing surgery in Southeast Asia, according to the team.