Transmission of Mycobacterium tuberculosis Beijing Strains, Alberta, Canada, 1991–2007
Published Date:May 2013
Source:Emerg Infect Dis. 19(5):701-711.
Emigrants And Immigrants
Mycobacterium Tuberculosis And Other Mycobacteria
Description:Beijing strains are speculated to have a selective advantage over other Mycobacterium tuberculosis strains because of increased transmissibility and virulence. In Alberta, a province of Canada that receives a large number of immigrants, we conducted a population-based study to determine whether Beijing strains were associated with increased transmission leading to disease compared with non-Beijing strains. Beijing strains accounted for 258 (19%) of 1,379 pulmonary tuberculosis cases in 1991-2007; overall, 21% of Beijing cases and 37% of non-Beijing cases were associated with transmission clusters. Beijing index cases had significantly fewer secondary cases within 2 years than did non-Beijing cases, but this difference disappeared after adjustment for demographic characteristics, infectiousness, and M. tuberculosis lineage. In a province that has effective tuberculosis control, transmission of Beijing strains posed no more of a public health threat than did non-Beijing strains.
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